A Call to Action: Take Care of Your Heart

Every 39 seconds, an American experiences a heart attack.

During American Heart Month, dedicate time to prioritize your cardiovascular well-being. Make conscious changes to your diet and exercise habits to decrease the risk of heart attack, stroke, and other related complications.

Prevention is the Best Medicine

Doctor taking blood pressureHeart disease remains the leading cause of death in the United States. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) underscore three pivotal risk factors for heart disease: high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and smoking. Additional risk factors include diabetes and obesity, all of which can be mitigated through lifestyle modifications.

"I always emphasize the significance of preventive measures," says Dr. Heise, Chief Medical Officer at Door County Medical Center (DCMC). "Addressing risk factors early on can significantly reduce the likelihood of heart disease. It's about empowering individuals to take charge of their cardiovascular health." 

Move More

Group of people exercisingPhysical activity has numerous benefits. It strengthens your heart, improves circulation, reduces stress, and can help achieve weight-loss goals—all of which lower the risk of developing heart disease. As little as 60 minutes a week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity such as walking briskly helps your heart. For major health benefits, aim for at least 2.5 hours a week

Try these tips from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) to make being active part of your everyday routine:

Add a friend of family member

  • Take a yoga or other fitness class online or in person with a friend.
  • Share your fitness goals with your spouse or roommate.
  • Commit to a walking schedule with a friend, even if you can't walk together.

Do what you love

  • If you enjoy the outdoors, try biking, hiking, pickleball or gardening.
  • Play with the children in your life.
  • Think of physical activity as a special time to refresh your body and mind.

Build activities into your day

  • Do strength exercises while watching TV or listening to a podcast.
  • Take the stairs.
  • Use a workout game on your gaming console.
  • Take a walk during lunch.
  • Go for a walk or a bike ride before you sit down to enjoy dinner or a movie.

Dr. Heise adds, "Heart health is not just an individual journey—support and encourage each other to make better choices."

A Healthier Relationship with Food

Shopping for healthy foodThe path to a healthier heart often starts with what's on our plates. Cathy Keller, a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist at Door County Medical Center advises, "Consider your diet a cornerstone of heart health. Embrace nutrient-rich foods, follow heart-healthy eating plans, and let your meals be a celebration of wellness."

The American Heart Association (AHA) and NHLBI recommend the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) eating plan in order to reduce the likelihood of developing heart disease. The DASH eating plan requires no special foods and instead provides daily and weekly nutritional goals. This plan recommends:

  • Incorporating vegetables, fruits, and whole grains into meals.
  • Including fat-free or low-fat dairy products, fish, poultry, beans, nuts, and vegetable oils.
  • Limiting foods high in saturated fat, such as fatty meats, full-fat dairy products, and tropical oils like coconut, palm kernel, and palm oils.
  • Minimizing the intake of sugar-sweetened beverages and sweets.

At Door County Medical Center, we believe that fostering well-being begins with knowledge. Take a moment this February to take stock of your heart health. Schedule a check-up, discuss your risk factors with your healthcare provider, and understand your individual needs. It's a proactive step towards a healthier, more informed you.

Published 1/31/2024 6:00:00 PM
Tags: cardiac, community health, diet, heart, heart healthy, news

Search our blog

Popular Tags

3D Mammography   75   75th   acid reflux   addiction   adrc   advance directive   Affective   alcohol   Algoma   Algoma Community Wellness Center   als   alzheimer's disease   Ambassador   American College of Healthcare Executives   Angel Ball   anniversary   antibody treatment   anti-bullying   apnea   art   art for health   art gallery   arthritis   athlete   athletic edge camp   athletic trainer   Auxiliary   award   awards   Awareness   back   behavioral health   bill   bone marrow transplant   Bravo   Breast Cancer Awareness Month   breast cancer prevention   breastfeeding   Brian   brussels sprout slaw   Burkitt Leukemia   C.H.I.P.   cancer   cardiac   cardiopulmonary services   care manager   cataracts   catholic   catholic sisters   Celebrate Community   celebration   center   Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services   ceremony   certification   childcare   children   CHNA   cold flu prevention   colon cancer   colonoscopy   community   community health   Community outreach   Coronavirus   COVID 19   COVID-19 booster   COVID-19 vaccine   critical access hospital   CT scanner   cyberbullying   da Vinci robot   da Vinci Surgical System   daisy award   Daylight Savings Time   DCMC   DCMC Auxiliary   DCMC staff   dementia   dental clinic   dentist   depot   depression   dermatology   diabetes   diagnostic imaging   Diana Wallace   diet   directcare   Disorder   dogs   Domestic Violence Awareness   donate   donor   Door County   Door County CARES   door county half marathon   Door County Meals Cooperative   door county schools   Door County Triathlon   Door County YMCA   Door Healthy Weight Center   Door Orthopedic Center   Dr. Daniel Tomaszewski   Dr. Elizabeth Gaida   Dr. Mark Jordan   Dr. Michael St. Jean   Dr. Reisner   Dr. Rory Johnson   Dr. Shaun Melarvie   drive-through clinic   e-cigs   economic impact   economy   Edge 3D   Education   emergency department   employee art   employment   environment   environmental stewardship   exercise   eye surgery   fair   Family   family medicine   family practice   farmer's market   first responders   fitness   five   five star hospital   Florence Nightingale   flu   foot   foot pain   Foundation   fundraiser   gallery   gardening   general surgery   Gerald   GERD   gynecological procedures   handwashing   happy holidays   head   health   health insurance   health tips   healthcare   healthcare career   healthcare decisions   healthcare leader   healthcare leaders   healthy eating   heart   heart healthy   heart-attack   heartburn   Heartburn and Reflux Center   Help Our Heroes   hernia   hernia screening   hip replacement   history   HOPELINE   hospice   hospital   House and Garden Walk   HPV   Human Kindness Project   immunization   infant   insomnia   insurance workshop   international overdose awareness day   internships   job   job openings   jody boes   joint replacement   June   kelsie ladick   kids   Kids' health   kim   knee replacement   Lab Drive-Thru   LEAP   lice   life   LifeAssist   living will   luke spude   lyme disease   mammography   marinara sauce   medical services   medication   memory   memory clinic   memory loss   men's health   men's health month   mental health   mental illness   milk   ministry   ministry fund   mission and values   MRI   National Donate Life Month   national heath decisions day   national hospital week   National Nurses Week   National Organ Donation Day   National Women’s History Month   navigator   New Year   newborn   news   no surprise act   non-profits   North Shore Medical Clinic   Northeast Wisconsin Technical College   novel coronavirus   nurse   nursing   nursing excellence   nursing program   nutrition   nwtc   obesity   OB-GYN   open house   ophthalmologist   opioid   OPSU   organ   organ donor   orthopedics   outpatient surgery   outreach   pap test   patient   patient care   patient financial services   Patti Balestrieri   Paula Hobart   pediatrics   pelvic health   pets   physical activity   physical therapy   plastic surgery   podiatrist   post exercise tips   PRC   Prevea   prevention   primary care   Providers   race   recipe   recovery   recruitment   reflux   rehab services   resolutions   respiratory illness   robotic surgery   rotator cuff repair   RSV   running   rural   rural healthcare   SAAM   SAD   safe haven   scholarship   scholarships   school   School Nursing   Seasonal   senior life solutions   senior therapy   Seniors   services   sexual assault   Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner   Shop and Dine Day   Sister Bay   Sister Bay Clinic   skilled nursing   skilled nursing facility   skin cancer   Sleep   sleep disorder   sleep lab   smoking   snf   social justice   sparc   specialty providers   sports   sports medicine   sports training   St. Francis   star   state-of-the-art   Stephens   stroke patients   studer group   suicide awareness   suicide awareness month   suicide prevention   summer   summer programs   sun care   surgery   sweet dreams   swiggum   technology   Teen health   Teens   telemedicine   teleNICU   telepediatrics   The Angel Ball   The Community's Garden   The Healing Project   therapy   ticks   tissue donor   to   tooth fairy   training tips   Treatment   triathlon   urgent care   vaccination   vaccinations   vaccine   vaping   virtual appontments   virtual visit   vision   vlog   volunteers   wall   Washington Island   wellness   Wendy Ulrikson   women's center   women's health   work injuries   world breastfeeding week   Worrick   wound care   years   YMCA   youth workshops