Mount Nittany Health and the American Heart Association are pleased to recognize February as American Heart Month. Annually, American Heart Month is a time dedicated to raising awareness about heart disease and its impact on our health and well-being. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, impacting millions of people each year, but it can often be prevented through simple lifestyle changes. Jeffrey Elias, DO, FACEP, Emergency Medicine, Mount Nittany Medical Center, shares some helpful tips to improve your heart health this February:
1. Eat a healthy diet rich in vegetables and fruits, and avoid foods high in salt and saturated fats like butter, coconut oil, sausage and bacon.
2. Exercise regularly, and try to engage in cardiovascular and aerobic activity like cycling, jogging and brisk walking, if possible.
3. Monitor and maintain a healthy weight, following guidelines suggested by your provider. Be sure to keep an open dialogue with your provider and ask for dietary recommendations to meet your goals.
4. Avoid all forms of tobacco. Quit smoking and avoid exposure to secondhand smoke.
5. Take a daily vitamin and/or fish oil to improve your heart health.
6. Schedule regular check-ups with blood pressure and cholesterol screenings. Follow your provider’s recommendations for high blood pressure and high cholesterol management.
7. If you have prediabetes or suffer from Type 2 diabetes, monitor your blood cholesterol, blood pressure, blood sugar, and weight.
8. Manage stress and anxiety through activities such as meditation and exercise.
Mount Nittany Medical Center was recently recognized by the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association with the Stroke Gold Plus Award and Stroke Elite, and it was recognized for Cardiovascular Excellence. By working together, we can help reduce the impact of heart disease and contribute to our mission of “Healthier people, stronger community.”