Thursday, February 6, 2014

Dairymom Supports Wear Red Day

It's a fact that heart disease is the leading cause of death for women in the United States. Although we can't control  age,  genetics or  gender, we can know the facts about lifestyle changes that can lower the risk for heart disease and make sure we are aware of the signs of a heart attack. National Wear Red Day  (the first Friday in February) is a perfect opportunity to increase our knowledge and  raise awareness about heart disease and share information with our family and friends.

 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states these  risk factors  may increase your chances of getting heart disease :
  •  Excessive alcohol use
  • High blood cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Diet high in saturated fats and cholesterol
  • Family history of heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Obesity
  • Physical inactivity
  • Tobacco use
To reduce your chances of getting heart disease:
  • Know your blood pressure
  • Talk to your doctor about whether you should  be tested for diabetes
  • Quit smoking
  • Discuss checking your cholesterol and triglyceride levels with your doctor
  • Make healthy food choices
  • Limit alcohol intake to one drink a day
  • Lower your stress level and find healthy ways to cope with stress
  • Get 30 minutes of aerobic activity at least 3 times per week
According to the CDC, sometimes heart disease may be silent and not diagnosed until a woman experiences signs or symptoms of a heart attack, heart failure, an arrhythmia or stroke.
Common symptoms that may occur include:
  • Unusually heavy pressure on the chest, like there's a ton of weight on you
  • Sharp upper body pain in the neck, back throat, abdomen  or jaw
  • Severe shortness of breath
  • Cold sweats (not hot flashes from menopause)
  • Unusual or unexplained fatigue
  • Unfamiliar dizziness or lightheadedness
  • Unexplained nausea or vomiting
  • Fluttering feelings in the chest (arrhythmia)
  • Signs of stroke that may include:  sudden weakness, paralysis or numbness of the face/arms/legs; trouble speaking or understanding speech; difficulty seeing in one or both eyes, dizziness, sudden and sever headache or loss of consciousness.
If you are experiencing these symptoms or someone you know is having a heart attack, call 9-1-1 immediately. Treatment works best if given within 1 hour of when symptoms begin.

You can find more information about heart health at Go Red for Women, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and National Dairy Council.

National Wear Red Day will find me wearing red under my pink coveralls but more importantly, I plan to renew my commitment to make the lifestyle changes  that can make a difference to my heart health.

                                                       Happy National Wear Red Day!

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