Heart Health by Dr. Michelle Irwin

Heart Health

Chiropractic Kirkland WA Finger Couple

By Dr. Michelle Irwin

February is American Heart Month and we want to share what we know from our hearts. Something that is becoming more and more evident is how many people are affected by heart disease. Heart disease used to be the bane of old age but now we know that it can happen at any age. Factors that lead to heart disease are happening at younger and younger ages with higher rates of obesity and high blood pressure occurring in younger people more and more often. There are many conditions and behaviors that put us at risk of heart disease, from high blood pressure to unhealthy eating patterns. I will touch on a few.

  • High blood pressure plagues millions of Americans and it starts at younger ages, even in the 30s for some, and if left unchecked or uncontrolled, it is one of the biggest risks for heart disease along with other harmful conditions such as stroke.
  • High cholesterol increases the risk of heart disease by causing the heart to work harder to pump the blood through the body.
  • Smoking damages blood vessels leading to heart disease, so if you don't already smoke don't start and if you do, try stopping as soon as possible.
  • Obesity puts extra strain on the heart and more than 1 in 3 Americans is affected with 1 in 6 children/adolescents having obesity.
  • Diabetes causes sugar to build up in the blood, damaging the blood vessels and nerves going to the heart and there are more than 1 in 10 people in the US who have diabetes.
  • Physical inactivity means you get less than 150 minutes of moderate physical activity a week and that means you are not moving the blood through your body and letting the vessels do their job.
  • Unhealthy eating patterns include eating too much processed food, not enough fruits and vegetables and not eating the right healthy fats, but instead eating unhealthy fats that increase heart disease risk.

It is never too early to take care of your health. What we do today creates our world of the future, so let's make our futures bright and energized at every age.

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