February is National Heart Healthy Month Awareness
Did you know, heart disease is the leading cause of death for women, African Americans and strokes are the fifth cause of death? The heart and the brain are two major organs in the body, awareness and caution to your health can reduce and even prevent the risk for heart disease, heart attack and strokes. The symptoms of heart disease may be silent, experiencing no symptoms, while some may experience the symptoms of a heart attack (chest pain/discomfort, nausea/vomiting, extreme fatigue and shortness of breath). The symptoms of a stroke can be facial drooping, numbness/weakness on one side of the body, and slurred speech. (F.A.S.T). Both require the immediate timely action of calling 911! Don't drive yourself to the hospital!
Know CardioPulmonaryResusciation! (CPR), 30 Compressions in the center of the chest and 2 breaths. Push Hard and Fast! Until help arrives or the person responds, and get an AED (Automated External Defibrillator). (Usually found in large arenas, supermarkets, gyms).
· Lifestyle changes of eating a healthy diet, low in saturated fats, high in fiber, limiting salt and sugar intake can lower your blood pressure, prevent and/control diabetes. (Know your numbers: Blood Pressure, A1-C (diabetes), Cholesterol and Triglycerides).
· Maintaining a healthy weight (Obesity contributes to your risk of heart disease).
· Engage in some form of physical activity for at least 20-30 minutes/day (walking, biking, dancing).
· Stop smoking, it can lower your risk of heart disease. Smoking even second hand smoke can increase the risk of damage to the heart and brain vessels.
· Limiting alcohol use, alcohol can raise the blood pressure. Men-2/day, Women-1/day
· Find healthy ways to cope with managing stress (meditation, prayer, deep breathing exercises, journaling).
As you can see...Education and Prevention are the best tools to keeping your heart healthy and having healthier outcomes.
Here at Saint James A.M.E Church, We will be hosting a Lunch and Learn workshop on February 15th for the African American Brain Health Initiative in the upstairs fellowship hall, after noon day service. Heart healthy recipes, activities, and ways to extend your life will be shared. Please join us!