What are preventative measures for heart health?

Stop smoking

If you smoke, quit. If someone in your household smokes, encourage them to quit. We know it’s tough, but it’s tougher to recover from a heart attack or stroke or to live with chronic heart disease. Commit to quit. We’re here to help if you need it.

Reduce blood cholesterol

Fat lodged in your arteries is a disaster waiting to happen. Sooner or later it could trigger a heart attack or stroke. You’ve got to reduce your intake of saturated and trans fat and get moving. If diet and exercise alone don’t get those numbers down, then medication is the key. Take it just like the doctor orders. Here’s the lowdown on where those numbers need to be:

Total cholesterol – Less than 200mg/dL

LDL (bad) Cholesterol

  • Low risk for heart disease – Less than 160mg/dL
  • Intermediate risk for heart disease – Less than 130mg/dL
  • High risk for heart disease including those with heart disease or diabetes – Less than 100mg/dL

HDL (good) Cholesterol

  • 40mg/dL or higher for men and 50mg/dL or higher for women

Triglycerides

  • Less than 150mg/dL

Lower high blood pressure

It’s the single largest risk factor for stroke. Stoke is the No. 2 killer and one of the leading causes of disability in the United States. Stroke recovery is difficult at best and you could be disabled for life. Shake that salt habit, take any medication the doctor recommends exactly as prescribed and get moving. Those numbers need to get down and stay down. Your goal is less than 120/80 mmHg.

Be physically active every day

Research has shown that getting 30-60 minutes of physical activity on most days of the week can help lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol and keep your weight at a healthy level. Something is better than nothing. If you’re doing nothing now, start out slow. Studies show that people who have achieved even moderate level of fitness are much less likely to die early than those with a low fitness level.

Aim for a healthy weight

Obesity is an epidemic in the United States and a precursor to type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure – the very factors that heighten your risk of cardiovascular disease. Your BMI (Body Mass Index) will tell you if your weight is healthy. Good nutrition and physical activity are the only way to maintain a healthy weight.

-Manage diabetes

-Reduce stress

-Limit alcohol


Charles A. Shoultz, Jr., M.D., F.A.C.C.   •   Charles A. Shoultz, III, M.D., F.A.C.C.   •   Rodney A. Brown, M.D., F.A.C.C.
William R. Pitts, M.D., F.A.C.C.   •   Donald S. (Buck) Cross, M.D., F.A.C.C. • Andrew K. Day, M.D., F.A.C.C.
Sherwin F. Attai, M.D., F.A.C.C.   •   Shawn J. Skeen, M.D. F.A.C.C.   •   Harvey R. Chen, M.D. F.A.C.C.
Adam M. Falcone, M.D., F.A.C.C.   •   Brian C. Barnett, M.D., F.A.C.C.

Diplomates, American Board of Internal Medicine,
Cardiovascular Disease, Interventional Cardiology, Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology