Woman Getting Her Blood Pressure Taken

Cardiovascular Health

Author: County Benefits
Date: 7/15/2021 11:24 AM

Learn six ways to lower your blood pressure and reduce your risk for heart disease and stroke.

Ask Your Doctor about Cardiovascular/Heart Health

Did you know that nearly half of all US Adults have some type of cardiovascular disease? If you are worried about your heart health, talk to your doctor. The following questions can help guide your conversation so that you and your doctor can create a plan to lower your risk of heart disease. When asking your doctor, write down the answers and any recommendations your doctor may offer.

  • What are my risk factors?
  • What are typical heart disease symptoms?
  • What can I do to fight heart disease?
  • Do I need to lose or gain weight for my health?
  • What should my blood pressure be and how often should it be checked?
  • What should my cholesterol and triglyceride levels be and how often should they be checked?
  • Should I take a daily aspirin?
  • How can heart disease affect other conditions I have?
  • What can I do to lower my risk of heart disease?
  •  What lifestyle changes would you recommend for me?

Six Ways to Lower Your Blood Pressure

1.      Exercise regularly – Try to get at least 150 minutes per week of moderate exercise.

2.      Eat a “Heart Healthy” Diet – Eat a diet full of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy, poultry, fish and nuts. Limit sugar and processed meats and salts.

3.      Lose Extra Pounds – Being overweight increases your risk for high blood pressure. Losing even a small amount of weight can make a positive impact.

4.      Stress Less – Stress hormones constrict your blood vessels and can lead to spikes in blood pressure. Make sure you are managing stress in your life in a healthy way.

5.      Nix the nicotine – All forms of smoking raise your blood pressure and put you at higher risk for heart attack and stroke. Quitting tobacco is one of the most important things you can do to live a longer life.

6.      Limit Alcohol – Drinking alcohol puts you at risk for high blood pressure. If you choose to drink, do so in moderation. The American Heart Association recommends a limit of 2 drinks per day for men and 1 drink per day for women.