Heart Disease Frightening Stats & Heart Healthy Goals

Heart Disease is the leading cause of death of both men and women in the United States.


Some Frightening Statistics: 

  • About every 26 seconds someone in this country has a heart attack, and about one person dies of heart disease every minute of every day.
  • Although the overall death rates for heart disease have been declining over the last several years, the death rates for younger women (aged 35 to 44) have increased approximately 1.3% annually between 1997 and 2002.
  • Recent research has suggested that Hispanic women may develop heart disease risk factors 10 years earlier than white women.
  • African American men and women have the highest risk of developing high blood pressure and the highest death rates from heart disease.


Now the Good News: 

  • 80% of heart attacks are preventable
  • The “Turning Back the Clock” Study found that following a healthy lifestyle (exercising 2.5 hours weekly, eating 5 fruits/vegetables a day, not smoking, and maintaining a healthy weight) reduce the risk for heart disease by 80%


Heart Healthy Goals:

    1. Know Your Numbers (blood pressure, cholesterol, weight)
    2. Exercise 30 minutes daily (Get a pedometer to track your activity – all adults should be walking at least 10,000 steps every day)
    3. Identify healthy ways to lower your stress level
    4. Limit alcoholic beverages to no more than 2 a day for men, no more than 1  a day for women
    5. Stop smoking, avoid second hand smoke
    6. Diet: Eat whole grains, fish (not fried) twice a week, eat 5 to 9 servings of fruits/vegetables a day, avoid trans fat, limit saturated fat
    7. Limit salt/sodium intake
    8. Maintain a healthy weight
    9. Cut back on beverages/food with added sugars (a 24-ounce regular soda has 280 calories, if you eliminate one soda from your diet every day you could lose 30 pounds in a year)
    10. Prevent weight gain by eating 100 fewer calories every day and increasing your activity by 2,000 steps every day

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