February is heart month, a time for us to learn more about heart health and hopefully make lifestyle changes that will protect our hearts. Our tickers are rather important, if the tick doesn't tock then that's it. While the euphemism might be cute, the fact that one in every four deaths in the U.S. in 2006 was because of heart disease, making it the leading cause of death for both men and women (per the CDC), is not something to take lightly.
Nearly twice as many women in the United States die of heart disease, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases as from all forms of cancer, including breast cancer, per the American Heart Association. Andrea Metcalf, author of Naked Fitness, has worked with the AHA for several years, and often speaks at Go Red events. She shared some startling facts that should snap awake any man or woman:
- 1/2 women over 40 will have a major CVD (cardiovascular disease) episode
- Cardiovascular disease kills more people than the next 6 leading causes of death combined
- 1/3 of women die of CVD (all ages combined)
- 90% of all people who have heart attacks have at least one or more of the following: diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol or high heart rate
So what do we really know about our heart's health? Sadly, not as much as we should. We know we should exercise and watch our sodium intake, but beyond that, we don't know enough about a disease that kills more than half a million Americans each year (CDC).
We spoke to several experts to find out what it is we should know about heart health that we don't already know. In short, we should stress less, brush our teeth more often, get more out of our annual OB/GYN visits, eat more seafood, and exercise more. We hope this information will help you make the important changes you need to make in order to live a longer, healthier life with a strong heart.
Reproduced from Dietsinreview