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Heart Health

When you choose healthy behaviors, you can lower your heart disease risk as well as the risk for ongoing conditions such as type 2 diabetes and some cancers. To help maintain a healthy heart and prevent heart events it is important to live a heart-healthy life.

  • Learn your health history
  • Eat a healthy diet
  • Move more, Sit Less
  • Quit smoking
  • Take medicine as directed
  • Rethink your drink
  • Monitor your blood pressure at home



Your Numbers

To take control of your health, you need to know and understand your numbers. These tests are commonly done at yearly medical exams: blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar, and body mass index. Understanding what the numbers mean can help you understand your risk for heart disease, heart attack, and stroke.

Heart Conditions & Events

A stroke occurs when a blood vessel in the brain is blocked or bursts. If you think you are having a stroke, you should call 9-1-1 immediately.

Stroke signs (spell F-A-S-T):

F - Face droops

A - Arm drifts

S - Speech slurs

T - Time is critical: Call 9-1-1

Other signs include:

  • Severe headache & confusion
  • Numbness or tingling
  • Loss of balance
  • Vision changes
  • Loss of movement in face or limbs, especially on one side

A heart attack is a life-threatening emergency. Call 911 if you or someone else is experiencing the following symptoms of a heart attack:

  • Sudden dizziness
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Cold sweat
  • Unusual tiredness
  • Heartburn-like feeling
  • Discomfort or tingling in arms, back, neck, shoulder or jaw

This is the most common type of heart disease in the U.S., but a lot can be done to prevent and manage it. Avoiding smoking, eating healthy, exercising regularly, reducing high blood pressure and cholesterol, maintaining a healthy weight are all steps that can be taken. Medical treatments are also available for coronary artery disease (CAD) and can help prevent more serious medical events such as stroke and heart attack. Some signs of CAD are:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Fatigue
  • Chest pain
  • Nausea or vomiting

More formally known as Congestive Heart Failure, this condition is when your heart isn't able to pump blood as well as it should and can lead to other serious or even life-threatening health problems.

Heart failure signs:

  • Extreme tiredness/fatigue
  • Fast weight gain
  • Weakness
  • Swelling in the ankles, feet, legs, abdomen and neck
  • Rapid or irregular heartbeat
  • Shortness of breath
A blue basket with food and a couple of eggs. A blue basket with food and a couple of eggs.

DASH Eating

Dietary Approach to Stop Hypertension, most often referred to as the DASH eating plan, is a heart healthy eating plan that helps to lower blood pressure and cholesterol and lowers the risk of many other chronic conditions.