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Heart Disease

The leading cause of death for American women is coronary heart disease, the cause of heart attacks. According to the American Heart Association, these are the primary risk factors:

  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Being overweight
  • Having a family history of early heart disease
  • High blood cholesterol
  • Smoking
  • Being physically inactive
  • Age (55 or older for women)
 
 
Things to do to stay healthy and prevent heart disease:
 
  • Don’t smoke, and if you do, quit. Women who smoke are two to six times more likely to suffer a heart attack than nonsmoking women. Smoking also increases the risk of stroke and cancer.
  • Aim for a healthy weight. Obesity causes many deaths that could be prevented.
  • Get moving. Make a commitment to be more physically active. Aim for 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity on most, preferably all, days of the week.
  • Healthy eating habits. Moderate the total fat in your diet and choose foods that are low in saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol.
  • Know your numbers. Have your blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood glucose checked periodically and strive to improve and maintain numbers in a normal range.