TROY — February is National Heart Health month and Miami County Public Health wants everyone to be heart smart and know how to manage their heart health. Heart disease is the number one cause of death, for both men and women, in the United States.
More than 600,000 people die each year from heart disease. Heart disease can be a heart attack, stroke, chest pain or other heart related issues. Although men may have different symptoms than women, anyone can have any of the symptoms and should seek medical help. There are many risk factors that can increase the chance of developing heart disease, but there are lifestyle changes that people can make to help lower our risk or avoid heart disease.
For the last 10 years, heart related deaths were the No. 1 cause of death in Miami County. In 2016, Miami County had 277 heart related deaths, compared to 71 for cancer, 171 for respiratory illnesses, 54 for cerebral issues and 23 for pneumonia.
Signs and symptoms of a heart attack:
• Chest or back pain
• Shortness of breath
• Numbness or pain in the arms or legs,
• Neck and jaw pain,
• Overweight or obesity (No. 1 for women)
• No exercise
• Bad diet
• Excessive alcohol and tobacco use
• Family history
What can we do:
• Eat a healthy diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables
• Exercise, walking, biking, dancing, playing a sport, or even weight lifting
• Reduce stress
• Don’t smoke and avoid excessive alcohol
• Know your numbers. Get cholesterol and blood pressure checked regularly.