February is Heart Month

Protect Your Heart From More Than Heartbreak

VALDOSTA – Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) is the nation’s leading killer of both men and women across all racial and ethnic groups. February is Heart Month and public health wants to remind everyone to protect their hearts from more than just heart break this and every month. 

Georgia Department of Public Health’s South Health District wants to remind everyone that one in five Americans has some form of cardiovascular disease. In fact, coronary heart disease is our country’s single leading cause of death and Georgia’s death rate is 9 percent higher than the national average.

Much of the death and disability from CVD is preventable.  Focusing on realistic ways of reducing risks can decrease the number of people who die from cardiovascular disease.

Some ways that a person can live heart healthy include:

    •  Get Checked – Get regular check-ups and take an active role in your health.  Also  

        monitor your blood pressure.

    •  Be Active – Incorporate physical activity into your daily routine. Maintain a body

        mass index (BMI) of less than 25 kg/m2.

    •  Be Smoke Free – Call the Georgia Tobacco Quit Line 1-877-270-STOP(7867) or sign up

        for smoking cessation classes.

    •  Eat Healthy – A diet consisting of high intakes of fruits and vegetables, 

        cereal fiber, meat (chicken and fish), nuts, legumes, and low saturated and trans fats.

Other heart healthy steps include eating appropriately sized portions, drinking plenty of water and eating low sodium foods. Regularly monitoring your blood pressure, with support from your health care team, can also help lower your risk for heart disease and stroke.

“Start today making heart healthy choices to protect your heart,” said South Health District Health Promotion Coordinator Traci Gosier. “It all begins with you.”

For more information on heart health visit https://www.cdc.gov/heartdisease. For more information on the Georgia Tobacco Quitline visit https://dph.georgia.gov/readytoquit.