Cardiovascular disease, more commonly known as Heart Disease, is the number one killer in America. Like many diseases, Heart Disease has some hereditary risk factors and some lifestyle risk factors. Read the list below and learn how to monitor and reduce your risk of developing cardiovascular disease.

You are at an increased risk for cardiovascular disease if you:

  • Smoke
  • Have high blood pressure
  • Have high cholesterol
  • Are not physically active
  • Have an elevated level of stress
  • Consume high volumes of alcohol
  • Are male
  • Are over age 65
  • Have a family history of cardiovascular disease
  • Are African American (African Americans are twice as likely to have high blood pressure, a leading risk for cardiovascular disease.)
  • Have Diabetes

Before you feel discouraged, there are some preventive measures you can take to reduce your risk of developing cardiovascular disease.

  • Eat a balanced diet that is low in saturated fats, red meats, oils and dairy
  • Increase your physical activity and exercise (always check with your doctor first!)
  • Quit smoking
  • Drink alcohol in moderation
  • Monitor your blood pressure and cholesterol
  • Find ways to reduce stress
  • Schedule regular check-ups with your doctor
Learn more with the Early Heart Attack Care brochure from the Society of Chest Pain Centers.
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