Northwest Community Hospital

WIN 2015

Spirit of Women magazine is a national publication presented to women by hospitals and their physicians. The magazine provides up-to-date, evidence-based healthcare information and promotes our hospitals as leaders in women's health excellence.

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© 2014 Spirit Health Group. All rights reserved. Your heart will pump more than 1 million barrels of blood for you during your lifetime. But what do you do for your heart? If you're like most people, there are lots of small changes you can make to treat your heart more kindly. And it just so happens that the things you do that are good for your heart are good for your overall health too. KNOW YOUR FAMIL Y HISTORY n Interview your siblings, parents and grand- parents to find out about chronic illnesses, diseases and major surgeries n Ask about the lifestyle your relatives lived – it may provide context n Document the information to share with your doctor MINIMIZE STRESS n Acknowledge that you may have too much harmful stress in your life n Take measures to relax, such as meditating, spending time with friends o r taking a walk n Seek help from a therapist or counselor if stress is overwhelming you GET ADEQUATE SLEEP n Aim for eight hours every night n Be consistent – go to bed and rise at the same time each day (weekends too) n Take action and talk to your doctor if sleep is challenging f or you DON'T SMOKE n Don't try that first cigarette; it is highly addictive n Find a smoking cessation program or partner with a budd y who is also trying to quit – you will increase your likelihood of success n Explore treatment options with your doctor EAT HEALTHFULLY n Avoid processed food n Increase your consumption of vegetables and fruits n Seek out whole grains and nuts n Choose lean protein like legumes or fish n Engage a nutritionist CONTROL YOUR BLOOD PRESSURE n Have it checked regularly by a healthcare professional (the do-it-yourself machines may not be accurate) n Keep it under 120/80 mm/Hg n Talk to your doctor if you have concerns LOWER YOUR BAD CHOLESTEROL n Maintain a total cholesterol less than 200 mg/dL n Keep your HDL at least 40 to 60 mg/dL (remember H for high) n Get your LDL under 100 mg/dL (remember L for low) KNOW AND TRACK YOUR NUMBERS BMI _______________________ Waist-to-hip ratio _____________ Total cholesterol _____________ Fasting triglycerides __________ Blood pressure ______________ Pulse ______________________ Blood sugar ________________ PARTNER WITH YOUR DOCTOR n Schedule your annual checkup or well-woman visit n Ask your doctor what preventive screenings and diagnostic tests are right for you n Follow through on any recommendations J OIN T HE DANCE n Find something you enjoy – dancing, swimming, or walking the dog n Do it regularly – a minimum of 30 minutes three times a week n Make it a habit – after about a month it becomes part of your lifestyle everybodydancenow

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