Everything You Need to Know About Heart Health

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for American women, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Here at Lady’s Care Center, we know that prevention and early detection are two key ingredients for reducing your risk of developing heart disease and complications associated with it. 

As a women's health specialist, Dr. Ladynez Espinal looks for signs of heart disease during your wellness exam. She also provides guidance on adopting heart-friendly habits.

Below, we’ll cover the risk factors of heart disease and the strategies you can adopt to keep your heart healthy.

Keeping your heart healthy

According to the American Heart Association (AHA), 90% of women have at least one risk factor for heart disease. Thankfully, the majority (80%) of heart problems are preventable. 

Risk factors for heart disease include:

Many of the risk factors listed above are within your control. You can adopt healthy habits to lose weight (if needed), eliminate unhealthy foods from your diet, and increase your physical activity. 

Weight loss and heart health

Being overweight doesn’t just affect the scale. It can increase your risk of developing many conditions, including diabetes and heart disease. When you’re overweight, you’re also more likely to have high blood pressure. According to an article published by Johns Hopkins, every 5-point BMI increase led to a 32% increased risk of heart failure

The good news is that losing weight can help reduce your risks for obesity-related complications. If you need help losing weight, Dr. Espinal offers several different types of medical weight loss programs.

Exercise and heart health

Exercise not only helps you lose weight, but it also supports your heart health. Even if you’re at a healthy weight, the American Heart Association recommends 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week. 

Exercise doesn’t have to be arduous. Find a fun activity that you enjoy. Dancing, online workouts, riding a bike, jogging, and swimming are all examples of cardiovascular exercise that supports your heart. 

Stress can also negatively impact heart health, and luckily, exercise can also help you manage stress levels.

Diet and heart health

Certain foods, like processed or refined foods, can increase your cholesterol levels. Some foods, though, can improve your heart health. Heart-healthy foods include: 

Besides eating nutrient-dense foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining a healthy weight, you should also know your numbers. This includes your blood pressure levels, your cholesterol, and your blood sugar levels (if you’re diabetic). 

Your annual exam and heart health

Sometimes, despite a good diet and exercise routine, your blood pressure or cholesterol is still too high. During your annual exam, we take your blood pressure reading. You won’t feel any different if your blood pressure is high, so these readings are key to early detection. A normal blood pressure reading is 120/80. Having baseline details can help us detect any subtle shifts trending upward.

From weight loss programs to nutrition or exercise advice, we can help you get the care you need to protect your heart. To make an appointment at our Miramar, Florida office, call 954-372-1653 or visit our website to request an appointment

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