The Numbers of Heart Health
By Sara Butler
Heart disease impacts the lives of many Americans. It kills more people every year in the United States than anything else. What’s really scary about it is that there are a number of factors you have no control over that may predispose you to heart disease, such as your family history and your age. But, there are factors that are firmly in your control that you need to take command of in order to help you fight against this killer.
Here are a couple of the numbers you need to pay attention to in order to take your heart health seriously.
Is Heart Disease Preventable?
According to the American Heart Association, you aren’t just a slave to your health destiny; as many as 80 percent of heart disease cases are preventable. When you have education and information on your side, you can take control of your health and change the outcome of heart disease in your future.
Your Blood Pressure
The first number you need to know is your blood pressure. But what does your blood pressure mean? Well, it’s the force your blood puts against the walls of your blood vessels. You need to aim for it to be less than 120/80 mm Hg. Any number above that increases your risk of developing heart attacks and strokes, especially with numbers above 140/90 mm Hg. So, pay attention to your blood pressure and discuss ways you can reduce it if it’s too high with your doctor and chiropractor.
Your Blood Sugar
Your blood sugar represents how much glucose (sugar) you have in your blood. This is measured by a special test called a hemoglobin A1C that tracks your average blood sugar over a period of several months. You can also have your fasting blood sugar measured to make sure it’s in the correct zone.
You want a hemoglobin A1C measurement of less than 5.7 percent. Your fasting glucose should be lower than 126 mg/dL. An A1C reading of higher than 6.5 percent or a fasting blood sugar measurement of higher than 126 mg/dL may mean you have diabetes, which makes you more susceptible to heart disease.
There are other factors that can work for or against you when it comes to heart disease, and you should discuss those with your medical practitioner on a regular basis to ensure you’re on the right track to stay healthy.
To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic.