February is American Heart Health Month
Heart Health Month
This month at Melander Sports Medicine we are spreading awareness about heart health and steps we can take in our daily lives to prevent heart disease.
Did you know?
Heart disease is the #1 killer of men and women. We are bringing awareness to a disease that claims over 600,000 lives each year.
Fun Heart facts
- Your heart pumps about 200,000 gallons of blood EVERY day.
- The fairy fly is a kind of wasp that has the smallest heart of any living creature. Whales have the largest heart of any living creature.
- Most heart attacks happen on Monday.
- If you were to stretch out your blood vessel system, it would extend over 60,000 miles.
- Death from a broken heart called broken heart syndrome is extremely rare, but possible.
For more fun heart facts visit healthline.com
5 Tips for a Healthy Heart
1. Get Active
Physical Activity can prevent your risk for cardiovascular (heart) disease, stroke, and diabetes. The American Heart Association recommends 30 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity five days per week. However, these sessions can be done all at once or broken up into smaller segments. Opting to take the stairs instead of the elevator or parking further away from from work or when shopping can help you achieve this goal. Doing physical activity will help you to live a longer, healthier life and will make you feel better!
2. Eat Smart
A healthy diet is essential to a healthy heart and lifestyle. Salmon, oats, berries, and dark chocolate are all examples of heart healthy foods that reduce the risk of atherosclerosis. In addition to eating heart healthy foods it is important to limit nutrient-poor foods such as foods with added sugar, saturated fat or those high in sodium. When eaten in excess these “junk” foods can raise blood pressure, clog arteries, and cause weight gain which are all risk factors for heart disease. For more tips for a healthy diet visit our blog post about a healthy heart from our very own dietician, Liz Erker!
3. Schedule a Well Visit
Early detection can make a huge difference in the management and treatment of heart disease. For instance, maintaining a healthy weight, blood pressure, and total cholesterol all play a significant role in maintaining a healthy heart. Untreated diabetes can put you at risk for heart disease and a simple blood test can be done at this visit as well to test for diabetes. Ask your doctor to review your overall health and come up with a plan together to keep you healthy and fit for years to come
4. Stress Less
Stress increases cortisol which leads to weight gain, a leading risk factor for heart disease. In addition, stress can also lead to other unhealthy habits that may put you at an even greater risk. Take time to yourself, practice positive self-talk, and sleeping more can all help to decrease stress.
A happy heart is a healthy heart. Make time for your favorite activities and hobbies to help improve your mood and establish a great foundation for a heart-healthy lifestyle.
As professionals in sports medicine, the team at Melander Sports Medicine will be happy to answer any questions you may have about your heart health. Give us a call!