Wear Red for Heart Awareness

Jan 31, 2018

Feb. 2 is Wear Red Day. In 2002, the Red Dress symbol seen in the form of stickers and pins became the national symbol for women and heart disease awareness. The Red Dress was designed to build awareness that not only men, but also women are at risk for heart disease and need to take action to protect their heart. In fact, the National Institute of Health states that heart disease is the number one killer of women.

Both women and men can celebrate February as Heart Health month by making lifestyle changes that will boost heart health. The NIH states there are choices we can make to prevent or delay heart disease, including:

• Don’t smoke. Smoking adds to the damage of artery walls. Quitting, even in later life, can over time lower your risk of heart disease and cancer.

• Stay at a healthy weight. Doctors can use your height and weight to determine your Body Mass Index. A BMI of 25 or higher puts you at greater risk for heart disease.

• Avoid spending hours every day sitting. Sedentary lifestyles increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. Take breaks from sitting every hour. Stand up, walk around and engage muscles not used when sitting.

• Exercise. Aim to get at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity on most days of the week. Every day is best. It doesn’t have to be done all at once – 10-minute periods will do.

• Keep your diabetes, high blood pressure, and/or high cholesterol under control. Take medications as prescribed and keep your doctor’s appointments.

• Manage your stress. Over time, continued strain on your body from routine stress may contribute to serious health problems, such as heart disease. Talk to your doctor about ways to manage stress in your day.

• Don’t drink a lot of alcohol. Men should not have more than two drinks a day and women only one.

Go Red in February!

The Long Beach Island Health Department offers free blood pressure screenings throughout LBI. See our website for locations and times: lbihealth.com.

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