Tag Archives: heart disease


Our heart is the major organ that keeps our bodies going.  February is American Heart Month, the time of year that several organizations, such as the American Heart Association want to impress upon us the importance of taking care of our hearts.

Did you know that heart disease is preventable and controllable?  It seems that we wait until something happens, such as a scare with heart problems before we do anything about it.  Barring predisposed heart disease, most of us are born with healthy hearts.  Exercise and proper diet are very important things to keep our entire body healthy, beginning in childhood. 

Each year, around 715,000 Americans have a heart attack.  About 600,000 people die from heart disease in our country every year, averaging one out of every four deaths.  Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that it is not too late to start your journey to better heart health by taking one step at a time.  Here are their recommendations:

  • Don’t become overwhelmed, or go it alone.  Get your friends and family involved and you will all be healthier for it.
  • Take one day at a time; if you fail to follow heart healthy rules today, start over tomorrow.
  • Reward yourself.  Do fun things, such as taking a walk with a friend, rather than sit on the couch eating snacks. 
  • Eat a healthy diet.  Choose fruits and yogurt rather than candy and ice cream.
  • Watch your weight. 
  • Monitor your blood pressure.
  • Don’t smoke.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Don’t overdo alcoholic beverages.
  • Keep a check on your cholesterol and triglycerides.
  • If you are diabetic, monitor your sugar levels faithfully.
  • Follow your doctor’s instructions and take your medicine as directed.

Here are the warning signs for heart attack from the American Heart Association:

  • Chest discomfort.  This usually last more than a few minutes, and may feel like pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.
  • Discomfort in other areas of the upper body.  Some persons who have had heart attacks reported symptoms in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
  • Shortness of breath.  This could happen in addition to or without chest discomfort.
  • Breaking out in a sweat, nausea, or lightheadedness.

The American Heart Association also shares warning signs for stroke:

  • Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body.
  • Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding.
  • Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes.
  • Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance, or coordination.
  • Sudden, severe headache with no known cause.

If you or someone you know has any of these signs (either heart attack or stroke), call 9-1-1!  Check the time so you will tell the EMS team what time the symptoms first appeared.  If given within three hours of the start of symptoms, a clot-busting drug can reduce long-term disability for the most common type of stroke.  In the event of symptoms of heart attack, call EMS or have someone drive you to the nearest hospital immediately.  Do not drive yourself, unless there’s no other option.

The best Valentine you can give your family is to take care of your heart every day.  My husband had a quadruple heart bypass seven years ago, which was a very scarey event for him and our family.  Thankfully, he takes better care of himself and exercises regularly. 

Last, but not least, remember this Friday, February 7th is National Wear Red Day to remind everyone to love their hearts!

Sources: CDC, American Heart Association

Ignoring Heart Disease Won’t Lower Your Risk

We don’t want to rain on your parade during the holidays, but here is a very insightful look at heart disease, some of the causes and preventive measures we should take.  We usually make a New Year’s Resolution to lose weight, so hopefully, this great article sent to us by Shannon Lochwood will help us realize how very important it is to be heart-healthy and keep that resolution! 



What better day to remind you that February is American Heart Month than on Valentine’s Day?  We made the announcement of this annual health observation at the first of the month.  However, it is such an important subject that we want you to be aware of the problems that come with heart disease. 

First, you must know the warning signs of a heart attack:

  • Chest discomfort.  It can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain in the center of the chest that last more than a few minutes.
  • Shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort.
  • Discomfort in other areas of the upper body.  This can include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.

Other signs may include breaking out in a cold sweat, lightheadedness, or nausea.  Women may experience other common symptoms, particularly shortness of breath, nausea /vomitting, and back or jaw pain.

Heart attacks strike someone every 34 seconds.  When the blood flow bringing oxygen to the heart muscle is severely reduced or cut off completely, a heart attack occurs. Please don’t ignore the warning signs.  Every second counts.  Call 9-1-1 or get to the emergency room; however, if you call for an ambulance, medical attendants can begin life-saving treatment, and the hospital will be expecting you, so you will get treatment faster than if you are driven by someone else. 

Please take care of your heart, and the ones you love, too.  Remind them to exercise, eat healthy, get the right amount of rest, and less stress in their lives.  We only have one heart, so let’s take care of it. 

From all of us at Blog4Safety, and Texas America Safety Company, have a great and healthy Valentine’s Day!

Source: Ft. Worth Star Telegram



Taken from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. this information is very important for us to share:

 Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States; one in every three deaths is from heart disease and stroke, equal to 2,200 deaths per day.   “Heart disease takes the lives of far too many people in this country, depriving their families and communities of someone they love and care for—a father, a mother, a wife, a friend, a neighbor, a spouse. With more than 2 million heart attacks and strokes a year, and 800,000 deaths, just about all of us have been touched by someone who has had heart disease, heart attack, or a stroke.”
– Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius

February is American Heart Month, and unfortunately, most of us know someone who has had heart disease or stroke. Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States; one in every three deaths is from heart disease and stroke, equal to 2,200 deaths per day. These conditions are also leading causes of disability preventing people from working and enjoying family activities. Cardiovascular disease is also very expensive—together heart disease and stroke hospitalizations in 2010 cost the nation more than $444 billion in health care expenses and lost productivity. However, we can fight back against heart disease and stroke. CDC and other parts of the US government have launched Million Hearts™, to prevent the nation’s leading killers and empowering everyone to make heart-healthy choices.

What is Million Hearts™? 

Launched in September 2011 by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Million Hearts™ is a national initiative that aims to prevent 1 million heart attacks and strokes in the U.S. over the next five years. This public-private partnership, co-led by CDC and the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is integrating and amplifying a range of existing heart disease and stroke prevention programs, policies, and activities.

Goals of Million Hearts™

The Million Hearts™ Initiative seeks to prevent 1 million heart attacks and strokes by the end of 2016 by:

  • Empowering Americans to make healthy choices such as avoiding tobacco use and reducing the amount of sodium and trans fat they eat. These changes will reduce the number of people who need medical treatment for high blood pressure or cholesterol—and ultimately prevent heart attacks and strokes.
  • Improving care for people who do need treatment by encouraging a focus on the “ABCS”—Aspirin for people at risk, Blood pressure control, Cholesterol management, and Smoking cessation—four steps to address the major risk factors for cardiovascular disease and help to prevent heart attacks and strokes.

Million Hearts™ Support

Million Hearts™ has the support of multiple federal agencies and key private organizations, including the American Heart Association, the American Pharmacists’ Association, the YMCA, Walgreens, and UnitedHealthCare. Over the next five years, Million Hearts™ is pursuing commitments and participation from many more partners in health care, public health, industry, and government. These partnerships will help Million Hearts™ leverage and advance existing investments in cardiovascular disease prevention.

What Million Hearts™ Means to You

Heart disease and stroke affects all of our lives, but we can all play a role in ending it. Prevention starts with everyone. Protect yourself and your loved ones from heart disease and stroke by understanding the risks and taking these steps.

  • Drive the initiative by challenging your family and friends to take the Million Hearts™ pledge at www.millionhearts.hhs.gov.
  • Get up and get active by being physically active for at least 30 minutes on most days of the week.
  • Know your ABCS:
    • Ask your doctor if you should take an Aspirin every day.
    • Find out if you have high Blood pressure or Cholesterol, and if you do, get effective treatment.
    • If you Smoke, get help to quit.
  • Make your calories count by eating a heart-healthy diet high in fresh fruits and vegetables and low in sodium and trans fat.
  • Take control of your heart health by following your doctor’s prescription instructions.

Together, we can all be one in a million this Heart Month and every month. Learn more about Million HeartsExternal Web Site Icon.

Please  take this message from the CDC to heart: we all must do more to keep our hearts and bodies healthy.  As the article stated, we all have experienced loss of family or friends because of heart disease.  Both my parents died from strokes; my husband had quadruple by-pass surgery five years ago, and is doing fine now.  He has always exercised and taken care of himself, however, cholesterol and triglycerides were a large part in his heart problems.  Have regular checkups , eat healthy, and exercise!  Pat


February is American Hearth month and that means it’s a good moment to think about a disease that kills more than 600,000 Americans each year. Heart disease is the leading killer among both men and women.  My personal story of how heart disease affected my Valentine is below.  First, here are suggestions from the Centers for Disease Control regarding lifestyle choices that can help us stays heart healthy:

  • Choose lean meats and poultry without skin and prepare them without added saturated and trans fat.
  • Select fat-free, one per cent fat, and low-fat dairy products.
  • Cut back on foods containing partially hydrogenated vegetable oils to reduce trans fat in your diet.
  • Cut back on foods high in dietary cholesterol. Aim to eat less than 300 mg of cholesterol each day.
  • Cut back on beverages and foods with added sugars.
  • Select and purchase foods lower in salt/sodium.
  • If you drink alcohol, drink in moderation. That means no more than one drink per day if you’re a woman and two drinks per day if you’re a man.
  • Keep an eye on your portion sizes.

It’s also important to know the signs of an impending heart attack, because they can start slowly and symptoms may seem mild. According to the National Heart, Blood and Lung Institute, these are the signs that may mean a heart attack is in progress.

  • Chest discomfort. Most heart attacks involve discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes, or that goes away and comes back. It can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness, or pain.
  • Discomfort in other areas of the upper body. Symptoms can include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw, or stomach.
  • Shortness of breath. May occur with or without chest discomfort.
  • Other signs may include breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea, or lightheadedness.

Two years ago, my husband was experiencing some of these symptoms, but was hesitant to go to the emergency room.  Not feeling well, he had seen a physician the day before;  the doctor did not run tests but instead gave him something for indigestion!  The next morning, the symptoms became more profound and we hurried to the emergency room.  Following routine tests, he was taken by ambulance to a hospital about 100 miles from home to be tested by cardiologists.  They found he had blockage in four arteries. He had successful quadruple bypass surgery and after several weeks of recovery and cardiac therapy, was back playing golf and working in his garden.  We know we are very blessed that he got the proper medical care before he had a heart attack.  We live in an age where miracles happen every day, and heart surgeons can mend our hearts, giving us another chance. 

I shared this story with you because you must not ignore the signs of heart disease or heart disease when it is affecting someone you love, or someone you know. Insist that they be checked out, and don’t let them delay.  It could save their life, or help them avoid the need for surgery.  Both my parents died as a result of strokes, so I know that my children and I must be aware of ways to keep our hearts healthy and strong.  Everyone should discuss their family history with their physicians.

We need to love the hearts of our sweethearts, children, grandchildren and friends by teaching them to make better choices in the foods they eat, lifestyles they live, and also encouraging them to make exercise a regular part of their daily routine.  It’s not only American Heart Month in our country, but every month is heart month all over the world!  This is a great time to tell your Valentines how special they are.  You can have a dazzling, romantic dinner, go to a movie, exchange gifts, or have a family Valentines celebration.  A promise to join a fitness center and exercise together might be the best gift you ever give!  Regardless of how you observe Valentines Day, spend the rest of your life showing those that you love – family, friends, and acquaintances – that you plan to take care of yourself by loving your heart, as well as theirs! 


Source of report: CBS News


Friday, February 4, is National Wear Red Day, a day when Americans nationwide will take women’s health to heart by wearing red to show their support for women’s heart disease awareness.  February is American Heart Month. How many of us have not had a family member or friend that has fallen victim to heart disease?  Heart Disease is the #1 killer of men and women.  It is the leading cause of death among one in three women. 

The Centers for Disease Control reports that heart disease is the leading cause of death in women age 65 and older.  It is the third leading cause of death in women ages 25-44, and second leading cause of death in women ages 45 – 64.  A woman’s risk of heart disease starts to rise around age 40,  but these messages are very important for younger women, because heart disease develops gradually and can begin at a young age – even in teen years.  Older women have an interest, as well.  It is never too late to take action to prevent and control the risk factors for heart disease.  Remember, most cases of heart disease can be prevented.

Lifestyle factors play a very important role in becoming heart-healthy and staying that way.  Women need to be aware of their family history and take preventative measures against heart disease.  They should talk to their physician and share information regarding family members who have had strokes or heart attacks.  They should have regular checkups, where their doctor can monitor their cholesterol and triglyceride levels. 

Eating foods that are healthy are one of the most important choices we all must make.  We must use portion control and exercise in order to keep our weight at a normal level.  Avoid beverages and foods that are loaded with extra sugars, and choose fat-free, 1% fat, or low-fat dairy products, and lean meat and poultry.   A very wise choice would be to not smoke, but if you do, stop.  Limiting alcohol intake is suggested, also.  Walking just 30 minutes per day for at least 5 days per week is an excellent way to keep our heart healthy.  It isn’t that difficult to increase physical activity at home, work or play by taking a few extra steps or a short walk on our lunch break.

The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) and partner organizations are sponsoring a national campaign called the Heart Truth.  This campaign’s goal is to give women a personal and urgent wakeup call about the risk of heart disease.  They also want to inform women of color that heart disease disproportionately affects them.  African American and Hispanic women in particular have high rates of major risk factors for heart disease, including obesity, physical inactivity, high blood pressure and diabetes, according to NHLBI statistics.  

Symptoms of heart attack can range from sudden and intense pain to slower signs, beginning with mild pain or discomfort.  The key is not to wait too long for medical attention.  Certain signs can be chest discomfort such as pressure, squeezing, or pain, upper body discomfort, shortness of breath, and/or lightheadedness, cold sweat, or nausea.  Call 9-1-1 immediately at the onset of any of these symptoms.

This is an opportunity for all of us – men and women – to unite in this life-saving awareness movement by wearing a favorite red dress, shirt, or tie, even a T-shirt, and possibly convince others to live a more heart-healthy life.  Join The Heart Truth on National Wear Red Day to help spead the critical message that, “Heart Disease Doesn’t Care What You Wear – It’s the #1 Killer of Women.”

Source: NHLBI, Centers for Disease Control