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In celebration of American Heart Month,
Mercy Hospital is focusing on the devastating
effects heart disease has on women and the
steps needed to prevent it.
T E X T BY RYA N JA R R E LL
According to the American Heart Association,
cardiovascular disease and stroke cause approximately
1 in 3 women’s deaths each year, meaning that almost
one woman every 80 seconds dies from this malevolent
malady. In an effort to help curb the effects of this
deadly disease, Mercy Hospital is devoting the entire
month of February to educate about this silent killer.
Inactivity A lack of physical exercise is a major risk factor for heart
disease. While ideally a rigorous workout routine should
be added to any American’s life, it may be more practical
to begin with smaller changes. To add steps to your daily
routine, try parking farther from your location. Another
quick tip is to set an alarm on your phone for every hour on
the hour. When it rings, partake in some quick calisthenics.
Smoking There aren’t any “if’s, and’s or butts” about it, this harmful
habit is a major contributor to poor heart health. Smoking
contributes directly to the buildup of fatty plaque in the
arterial walls, limiting the flow of well-oxygenated blood
to the rest of your body. Interested in sparing yourself the
heartache? Your physician can provide a number of helpful
resources to aid in smoking cessation.
Stress Wildly increasing among American adults and proven
to be a contributing factor of heart disease, chronic
stress can lead to unhealthy elevated levels of hormones
like adrenaline and cortisol as well as contribute to the
prevalence of other risk factors such as smoking and
overeating. Try getting more sleep. People who get less
than the recommended 7-9 hours of sleep a night report
a higher occurrence of stress.
For information about the Women’s Heart Event,
For a physician referral,
call 305.285.2929 or visit MercyMiami.com.