NH DHHS - Department of Health Recognizes National American Heart Month to Promote Heart Disease Awareness

Concord, NH - The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services

(DHHS), Division of Public Health Services (DPHS), Heart Disease and Stroke

Prevention Program is recognizing February as American Heart Month. Heart

disease can lead to heart attack, stroke, heart failure, and death. It is

the leading cause of death for both men and women across the country and

the second leading cause of death in New Hampshire.

One of the main risk factors for heart disease is high blood pressure.

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about 1

in 3 U.S. adults have high blood pressure, which increases the risk for

heart disease and stroke. High blood pressure also costs the nation $47.5

billion annually in direct medical expenses and $3.5 billion each year in

lost productivity. Both men and women can lower their risk of high blood

pressure and heart disease by leading a healthy lifestyle.

“When it comes to lowering one’s risk for high blood pressure and heart

disease,” said Dr. José Montero, Director of Public Health at DHHS, “it is

so important for men and women to understand their risk and take more steps

toward prevention.” “According to the CDC, only about 47% of people with

high blood pressure have it under control. There is much we can do to

improve our health and decrease our chances for heart disease, and it’s

time we all take a step toward better health.”

Take these steps toward a healthier life and a healthier heart:

Maintain a normal weight

Get at least 30 minutes of physical activity most days

Limit alcohol intake

Eat more fresh fruits and vegetables

Avoid tobacco and

Reduce salt

Know your ABCS:

Aspirin – talk to a healthcare provider about whether you should

take aspirin

Blood Pressure – have your blood pressure checked, talk to a

healthcare provider re: how often

Cholesterol – have your cholesterol levels checked

Smoking Cessation and

Take control of your heart health by following your doctor’s

instructions for medications and treatment.

For more information about heart disease, visit the American Heart

Association at www.heart.org, the Million Hearts Campaign at

www.millionhearts.hhs.gov, and the Centers for Disease Control and

Prevention website at www.cdc.gov/heartdisease and the NH Heart Disease

Stroke Prevention Program at http://www.dhhs.state.nh.us/dphs/cdpc/hdsp.htm