February is National Healthy Heart Month and in particular we would like to focus on seniors and healthy hearts. Being heart smart is imperative and it’s common for seniors to ignore heart healthy actions that could not only increase their life but increase the quality of their life.
Senior Heart Health Facts
Heart problems do not have to be a accepted part of aging. You can make small changes to help you get heart healthy and we are here to help you.
- 85% of those 65 and over die from heart disease
- Risk of heart disease increases with aging
- You can decrease your risk of heart disease, even in your senior years, with lifestyle changes
- Coronary Heart Disease (CHD) is the most common type of heart disease
Creating Seniors and Healthy Hearts
Lifestyle changes can be small but extremely successful in creating seniors with healthy hearts. Utilizing a caregiver to help make these lifestyle changes can make them easier to implement; giving seniors a better chance at having a healthy heart.
- You and Your Physician – It’s important to visit your primary care physician and discuss how you can not only reduce your risk of heart disease. Set goals and keep track with this guide.
- Manage Blood Pressure & Cholesterol – Know your numbers! Keep a close watch on blood pressure and cholesterol levels and you’re on your way to managing heart health.
- Simple Steps in Lifestyle Change – Believe it or not there are a few very simple steps you can take to reduce your risk for heart disease.
- Small Increases In Activities – Start with adding as little as 2 minutes a day to being active and increase activity a few minutes as you progress. A caregiver can walk with you around your house/apartment, outside in the yard, or at a local shopping area; guiding you while you gain strength.
- Diet Changes – Allow a dietitian to help you design healthy eating goals that include fresh fruits, vegetables and well balanced meals (one reason a professional caregiver is very helpful in assuring that you eat healthy). Make the changes slowly, finding better options to replace unhealthy favorites along with learning portion sizes.
- Medications – Nobody wants to be medicated but in some cases it’s important that you understand how important your medications are; including blood pressure medicine, cholesterol medicines and other life sustaining pharmaceuticals. Know you medications, ask questions and never stop taking or reducing a medication without your physician’s advice.
- Smoking – Seniors who smoke face much higher health risks. It’s never too late to stop smoking and the benefits are amazing; even if you’re a senior who smokes, quitting now can increase your quality of life.
In celebrating National Heart Month we felt the need to show you that heart disease is not an acceptable part of aging. Please take the time to learn more and allow us to help with seniors and healthy hearts.
Photo by HHS.Gov – Million Hearts Program – American Heart Month (used with permission)
CDC – Heart Disease