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February 2023: Know Your Numbers

We live our lives by numbers. We know our bank PIN number, our social security number, and many others to get through our personal lives. It is also important to know your heart health numbers. High cholesterol, high blood pressure, and high body mass index (BMI) are risk factors for heart disease and stroke. Elevated numbers often have no warning signs, so it’s a good idea to get your numbers checked regularly. Talk to your primary care provider about your risk factors. They may look at the measurements below:

  • Blood Pressure
    High blood pressure raises the risk of heart attack and stroke. You can maintain a healthy blood pressure by limiting salt, eating healthy, exercising, and by working with your healthcare provider on possible treatments.
  • Cholesterol
    Cholesterol is important for making hormones, vitamin D, and more. But the excess cholesterol in your blood can combine with other substances to form plaque. Plaque can build up in the walls of your arteries and lead to coronary artery disease, heart attack, or stroke.
  • Blood Glucose
    A blood glucose test measures the amount of sugar in the blood. These numbers help diagnose and monitor diabetes. Diabetes is another risk factor for heart problems.
  • Body Mass Index (BMI)
    BMI is an estimate of body fat and a good gauge of your risk for diseases that can occur with more body fat. It is calculated from your height and weight. It indicates whether you are at a healthy weight, overweight, or obese. The higher your BMI, the higher your risk for a variety of health problems.

Consider scheduling an annual physical with your primary care provider. Checking your numbers each year is a great way to be proactive about your health.

Click to read the entire February Wellness Newsletter

Learn more about simple food tweaks, the dangers of energy drinks and take the Be Kind, Be Healthy Challenge.