According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), heart disease remains the leading cause of death in the US. Cardiovascular disease can often go undiagnosed, and about half of Americans (up to 47%) have at least one major risk factor. Here are some quick tips to keep your heart healthy and strong.
- Take charge of your health. Nearly 50% of all adults in the US have some type of cardiovascular disease. Regular health screenings will keep you in the loop for risk factors including high blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, and more.
- Lack of exercise can increase your risk of heart disease, so get moving! Studies show that increased physical activity is associated with a 21% reduction in coronary heart disease for men, and 29% for women. Try opting for the stairs or taking the long way home after work.
- Sometimes it’s okay to be a quitter. Smoking cigarettes raises blood pressure and increases the risk of heart attacks and strokes. In addition, smoking accounts for one-fifth of all deaths from heart disease. Remember – it’s never too late to quit.
- Practice “self-care” daily. Stress is a huge trigger for cardiovascular disease, but there are so many healthy ways to cope. Why not give meditation a try?
- Eating a diet rich in vegetables and fruits helps keep your heart healthy. In fact, a plant-based diet can reduce your risk of heart disease by 40%. Go vegetarian for the day or swap out that burger for a plant-based patty.
- There are never enough hours in the day, but getting a good night’s sleep will make the rest of your time more enjoyable. You can reduce your risk of heart attack by 20% if you aim for 6-9 hours of sleep per night.
- Moderation is key. While men should avoid more than two drinks in a day, women should stick to one. One drink equates to a 5 oz. glass of wine, a 12oz. beer, or a 1.5oz. shot of liquor.
- Do you know your risk factors? Your family health history can play a major role in cardiovascular disease. Heart disease and stroke can impact anyone, but some groups are more likely to have an increased risk. Talk to your doctor about your medical history and stay in the know.
- Fight the stigma. Your mental health is equally as important as your physical health. If you’re having trouble dealing with depression or anxiety, seek the guidance of a healthcare professional.
- Know the warning signs and listen to your body. When it comes to heart attack and stroke, getting help quickly can make all the difference in the world. If you’re experiencing chest pain or tightness, numbness in your arms or legs, shortness of breath, etc. – call 911.
Statistics for this post were gathered from the CDC, the American Heart Association, the US National Institutes of Health Library of Medicine, the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, and the Progress In Cardiovascular Diseases journal.
About Intelligent Medical Objects (IMO)
At IMO, we are dedicated to powering care as you intended, through a platform that is intelligent, intuitive, and intentional. Used by more than 4,500 hospitals and 500,000 physicians daily, IMO’s clinical interface terminology (CIT) forms the foundation for healthcare enterprise needs including effective management of EHR problem lists, accurate documentation, and the mapping of over 2.4 million clinician-friendly terms across 24 different code systems.
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