National Wear Red Day is February 1st. Go Red for
Women is the American Heart Association’s national movement that advocates for
more research and swifter action for women’s heart health. The movement also
challenges people to know their risk for heart disease and act to reduce their
personal risk. Heart disease and stroke cause 1 in 3 deaths among women each
year, killing approximately one woman every 80 seconds. Fortunately, we can change that because 80
percent of cardiac and stroke events may be prevented with education and
the Signs and Symptoms?1
While there are many similarities in the symptoms
of heart disease in men and women, there are even more differences. Listed
below are the signs and symptoms, specific to women, that are important to
watch out for:
Heart Attack Symptoms:
Uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or
pain in the center of your chest. It lasts more than a few minutes or goes away
and comes back.
Pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the
back, neck, jaw or stomach.
Shortness of breath with or without chest
Other signs such as breaking out in a cold
sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.
As with men, women’s most common heart attack symptom
is chest pain or discomfort. But women are somewhat more likely than men to
experience some of the other common symptoms, particularly shortness of breath,
nausea/vomiting and back or jaw pain.
Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or
leg, especially on one side of the body
Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or
Sudden trouble seeing or blurred vision in one
or both eyes
Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of
balance or coordination
Sudden severe headache with no known cause
Take Steps to Reduce Your Risk2
Not only can you wear red to raise awareness but
you can also take steps to reduce your own risk. The American Heart Association
has developed an online tool called My Life Check. My Life Check allows you to
find out your heart score and see if you’re at risk based on Life’s Simple 7:
Tria Health offers Chronic Condition Management
through our Pharmacy Advocate Program. Heart Disease and stroke are two of the
many chronic conditions that Tria Health targets. Clinical Pharmacists provide
one-on-one telephonic counseling for members and act as their personal advocate
to help them navigate through the health care system. Through reviewing a
member’s medications and lifestyle habits, Tria Pharmacists can make
recommendations that will help control their chronic conditions and help them
February is American Heart Month, sponsored by the American Heart Association. This month is designed to raise awareness about heart disease, the leading cause of death in the United States. One in three deaths in the US is caused by heart disease and stroke.
Your friends at Tria Health want you to understand your personal risks, and what you can do to prevent heart disease in yourselves and your loved ones.
Know Your Personal Risk Factors
Knowing your numbers could potentially save your life! We encourage you to talk to our clinicians or another healthcare provider about your personal risk factors for heart disease.
Blood Pressure Below 120/80
Blood Sugar fasting blood sugar of less than 100
Body Mass Index less than 25
You Have the Power to Control Some of Your Risk Factors
There are many risk factors for heart disease, some within your control and others outside your control. The risks you CAN control include:
High blood pressure
High blood cholesterol
Lack of regular activity
Obesity or overweight
The risks outside your control are:
Previous heart attack or stroke
How to Live Healthy
The American Heart Association recommends that to live a healthy lifestyle, you must:
Eat Smart: Make healthy, delicious choices wherever and whenever you eat.
Add Color: Make life more colorful with fruits and vegetables.
Move More: Infuse more movement into your life for optimal health.
Be Well: Create balance, vitality and wellbeing through self-care.
Each year, 1 in 3 women die of heart disease and stroke. Today marks the American Heart Association’s 13th Annual National Wear Red Day, and Tria Health is joining the conversation because 80 percent of cardiac events can be prevented with education and lifestyle changes.
Prevention is the key:
There are a number of things that individuals can do to reduce their risk of heart disease and stroke.
Know your blood pressure and seek treatment if it is elevated (greater than 140 over 90)
Stop smoking – smoking doubles your risk of stroke
Know your cholesterol levels and talk to your doctor if your total cholesterol is over 200
Manage exercise/diet – exercising five times per week and maintain a diet low in salt, saturated and trans fats and cholesterol
Control alcohol use – excessive consumption of more than 2 drinks per day increases stroke risk
Control diabetes – achieve blood sugar and HgA1C goals
Identify and treat atrial fibrillation
If a stroke does occur, the most effective treatments must be initiated as soon as possible. Understanding the signs and symptoms of stroke allow you to seek medical attention immediately. The American Stroke Association has developed the following acronym to help patients recognize symptoms:
F – Face: Ask the person to smile. Does one side of the face droop?
A – Arms: Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
S – Speech: Ask the person to repeat a simple phrase. Is their speech slurred or strange?
T- Time: If you observe any of the signs, call 9-1-1 immediately.
Note the time when the symptoms first appear. There are FDA-approved medications that can be given within 3 hours of stroke onset that may reduce long-term disabilities associated with a stroke.
Talk to your Tria Pharmacist or other health care provider regarding what you can do to prevent and recognize. For information about Tria Health, visit www.triahealth.com.
WOMEN are more likely to die from heart disease or stroke than any other condition
1 in 3 women die of a heart attack or stroke
Heart disease and stroke are 80% PREVENTABLE
National Wear Red Day marks the start of American Heart Month and encourages women to become informed and involved to change this statistic. It is meant to encourage all of us to understand our risks for heart disease and stroke and if needed start making changes to lower these risks! Women are faced with many demands and little time, but it is important that we take time to care for ourselves as well as our family!
Why Do I Wear Red?
My father was diagnosed with heart disease when he was 45 years old. We have been blessed that he has not suffered complications and manages his heart disease with diet, exercise, and medications. His early heart disease, however, increases my risk of developing heart disease and that is something I can’t change. I can change other risk factors though through healthy living: not smoking, avoiding fast food, and exercising regularly to help keep my blood sugar, cholesterol, and blood pressure low. Some days it’s difficult to find the time or the will-power and I slip up, but I strive to make those days number very few. My sister and I are aware of our risks for heart disease and we try to help each other live well and challenge each other to be more active! We will be part of the change and work to prevent heart disease in women. So get out your red dresses, shirts, shoes, and accessories to celebrate National Wear Red Day and spread the word!
Heart Disease encompasses many cardiovascular conditions including: heart attack, heart failure, heart valve problems and irregular heart rhythms. Many of the conditions are due to atherosclerosis, or narrowing and hardening of arteries due to plague build up. Plague is a sticky, cholesterol containing substance that can slow or stop blood flow through arteries if build-up becomes so large that a clot develops or breaks loose. When this happens in the heart it can result in a heart attack; when this happens in the brain a stroke can occur. Take the online Go Red Heart CheckUp assessment developed by the American Heart Association to find out your specific risks!
Has a physician ever recommended that you follow a heart healthy diet? A lot of people with heart disease or diabetes are encouraged to eat a heart healthy diet but aren’t given guidance on what this means. We’ve compiled some of the best tips here so you can get started on your heart healthy lifestyle.
Fruits and vegetables
Whole grains such as brown rice and oatmeal
Low-fat dairy such as cheese, milk, or yogurt
Poultry such as chicken and turkey
Beans and peas
Vegetable oils such as canola or olive
LIMIT the following:
Sweets like candy, ice cream or baked goods
Sugar-sweetened beverages such as soda, sweet tea or coffee drinks
Red meats such as beef and pork
Saturated fats found in processed meats, animal fat, coconut oil, etc.
Reducing sodium intake is an important component of a heart healthy diet. Aim for no more than 2400mg of sodium or one teaspoon of tablet salt, per day. For most people, the salt in their diet doesn’t come from the salt shaker but from certain foods they buy. Use these tips when shopping and cooking:
Buy fresh, plain frozen, or canned “no salt added” food. Avoid canned or processed foods.
Cut back on frozen dinners, pizza, canned soups or broths, and salad dressings.
Rinse canned foods to remove some salt.
Choose ready-to-eat breakfast cereals low in sodium.
Remember the kind of food that has more than 1000mg of sodium: fast food burger or hot dog, one large slice of pizza, or one can of soup.
The following apps can be helpful to track what you eat: