February is American Heart Month and my friend Barbra Streisand is a
fearless advocate for heart health. She’s working to raise awareness
of the #1 killer of women and to do my part, I decided to have cameras
join me during my own heart check (sound familiar?)... The typical
heart check appointment is quick and includes both a blood pressure
and a cholesterol check — the American Heart Association suggests you start practicing heart-healthy habits in your 20s to avoid complications later in life.
“There are young people walking around with very high cholesterol levels, and they’re gonna have a heart attack when they’re 45, and we could’ve prevented it,” says Dr. Noel Bairey Merz.
Getting your heart checked should be an important part of every woman’s yearly health routine. But people like Barbra want to be sure women are doing what they can to monitor their heart health.
While you can’t change your family history, there’s still a lot you can do to reduce your risk. The American Heart Association recommends:
- If you smoke, quit!
- Exercise — according to Dr. Bairey Merz, even just walking more can help prevent cardiovascular disease.
- Follow a heart-healthy diet — low in cholesterol, saturated fat, and refined sugars.
- Maintain a healthy weight.
- Reduce stress — even simple activities like getting together with friends for a laugh can go a long way.
- Control high blood pressure and diabetes.
- Limit alcohol consumption.
- And finally, make sure to get your heart checked every year.
Watch my heart check and check-in with Barbra Streisand on Yahoo News: