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News | Feb. 27, 2018

American Heart Month: Know your numbers

DLA Troop Support Resiliency team

Do you know whether your blood pressure runs high, low or somewhere in between?  How about your cholesterol levels?

These numbers are important indicators of your heart health. Please join the Resiliency Team in taking control of your heart health by knowing your numbers, knowing the signs of cardiac distress and choosing to live a healthier lifestyle.

Know your numbers. According to the American Heart Association, there are five numbers we all need to know:

  1. Total cholesterol,
  2. HDL (good) cholesterol,
  3. Blood pressure
  4. Blood sugar
  5. Body mass index

If you have not done so recently, make an appointment with your healthcare provider to check on these numbers. The results will help them determine your risk for developing cardiovascular diseases.

Commit to checking your blood pressure on the same day, once a month. Use your birthday as a helpful reminder. For example, if your birthday is Feb. 14, make it a point to check your blood pressure around the 14th of each month. You can use the automated blood pressure machines here on base or at your local pharmacy.

You can also have your blood pressure taken at the Federal Occupational Health Center in Building 2C North. The center hours are: Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – noon and 12:45 – 4:30 p.m. No appointment is necessary. You may call the center at (215) 697-6750 for more information about blood pressure monitoring.

Know the signs. A person suffering a heart attack may experience chest pain or discomfort that lasts more than a few minutes or that goes away and comes back. They may also feel pain in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach. Other symptoms include shortness of breath, breaking into a cold sweat, nausea and lightheadedness. Know the warning signs of heart attack, stroke and cardiac arrest.

Live healthy. Make your health a priority! Improve your diet by increasing your intake of vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds. Maintain a healthy weight to reduce the burden on your heart, lungs, blood vessels and bones. Exercise to improve your cholesterol levels, weight and muscle tone.  For information on stress management, heart-healthy recipes and heart-healthy exercise, visit the AHA Healthy for Good website.