Simple Changes for a Healthy Heart
Heart disease is the number one killer for both men and women in the United States, but is also one of the most preventable health issues. Scott Shurmur, M.D., says simple daily habits can help promote greater heart health.
His first tip? Get moving. He says, "150 minutes of walking every week can benefit individuals both metabolically in terms of preventing diabetes and improving cholesterol, but also in smoothing out blood pressure and helping in weight management." Resistance training also shows increasing benefits.
Managing a healthy diet is also essential to promoting heart health. Foods high in saturated fat can leads to premature coronary heart disease death. Dr. Shurmur encourages individuals to develop an eating plan that limits foods with red beef, full-fat dairy products, and high processed, sugary foods. Diets with nutrient dense, rich foods such as fish, vegetables, and other natural foods are encouraged.
A lifelong plan of heart health is best, so individuals should start early. Many people wait for something to go wrong with their body before taking care of their health, but the key is to know your body and what you can do before an event happens.
Understand your Risks
If you have or do any of the following, you may be at risk for heart disease:
- High blood pressure
- High blood sugar or diabetes
- High cholesterol
- Use tobacco
- Family history of heart disease
Develop Simple Habits of Prevention
Follow these steps to be proactive about your health:
- If you take medications, take them regularly. Don't skip days.
- Eat healthy
- Exercise regularly
- Don't smoke or use other tobacco
- If you drink, do so only in moderation
- Manage weight
- See your physician annually
Look for Warning Signs:
Heart disease symptoms include:
- Chest discomfort or pressure
- Chest tightness
- Neck pain
- Jaw pain
- Fatigue or weakness
- Inability to exercise
- Excessive sweating
- Numbness in legs or arms
Symptoms can be different in men and women. If you have a pre-existing condition like diabetes, heart disease symptoms can vary. When every day activities become difficult and you find find it hard to do regular tasks, consult your physician.
Scott Shurmur is the Cardiology Division Chief and Interim Chair of the Department of Internal Medicine.
TTUHSC Celebration of Life Service was held March 25th in remembrance of Tom McGovern, Ed.D.
TTUHSC has been named as a Military Friendly® School for 2022-2023. Among graduate schools, TTUHSC ranked fourth in the nation, achieving Gold award status.
CPRIT recently awarded a $1 million prevention grant to Rakhshanda Rahman, M.D., Rebeccah Baucom, M.D., and John Kidwell, M.D., from the TTUHSC School of Medicine.
The Innovation Hub at Research Park today (September 26, 2022) announced the winners of its annual Presidents' Innovative Startup Awards. The award recognizes startups that have a high potential for growth and an economic impact in West Texas.