Understanding the important numbers for your heart health

Heart disease can be prevented when patients are aware of their risk factors and early indicators of cardiac issues. There are a few key numbers that will give you some perspective on your heart health and allow you to take proper precautions to lower your risk of a heart attack. By visiting your physician for annual checkups, you can stay up to date on these critical numbers that could save your life.

Cholesterol

There are three types of cholesterol in the blood stream, and these are not all bad. HDL cholesterol actually lowers your risk for heart disease, so this number should be higher. LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, however, are bad fats that can clog the arteries and restrict blood flow. When your doctor orders a blood test to measure your cholesterol, all three numbers will be considered to make a lipid profile.

Blood pressure

Nearly one-third of American adults have high blood pressure (hypertension), and many people do not even know they are affected by this problem. High blood pressure means that your heart is working harder to pump blood through the body, and this additional stress can lead to serious cardiac issues down the road. By measuring your blood pressure regularly and taking steps to keep yours under 120/80, you can ensure a healthier future for your heart.

Body weight

Rising obesity rates have led to an increase in heart disease, because individuals with excess body weight have higher chances of cholesterol problems, hypertension and type 2 diabetes. Those who carry most of their weight in their midsection have the highest risk for cardiac issues.

Edward Heart Hospital can help you manage your heart health with patient education, screening and cardiac rehabilitation programs. To connect with Edward Hospital, visit their website or call 630-527-3000. 

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