February 2014 > Smart Choices for a Healthy Heart
Be a Wise Healthcare Consumer
Make Smart Choices for a Healthy Heart
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States and a major cause of disability. The risk of developing heart disease increases as you age. You have a greater risk of heart disease if you are a man over age 45 or a woman over age 55. You also are at greater risk if you have a close family member who had heart disease at an early age.
Fortunately, there are many things you can do to reduce your chances of getting heart disease. See our Wellness Wise article for this month for some simple ideas that you can start today. And remember that your UT SELECT Health plan offers preventive services at no out-of-pocket cost that can help you follow through on some of the recommendations that can be completed by getting a yearly physical exam and preventive screenings.
- Know your blood pressure and keep it under control;
- Exercise regularly;
- Don't smoke;
- Get tested for diabetes and if you have it, keep it under control;
- Know your cholesterol and triglyceride levels and keep them under control;
- Eat a lot of fruits and vegetables;
- Maintain a healthy weight; and,
- Limit alcohol use.
If you have certain medical conditions such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, or diabetes, it is especially important for you to manage your health to reduce your risk for developing heart disease. You should visit your health care provider regularly and talk with them about your treatment plan, as well as any questions you have about your medications or other treatment options.
Source: National Institutes of Health - MedlinePlus at http://1.usa.gov/1hYbFXX.