Thursday, 6 February 2014

Love Your Heart!

Did you know that February is not only the special month of celebrating love, but it is also National Heart Month? So not only are we reminded to celebrate love, but also to think about our heart health and how we can make lifestyle changes to help our hearts be healthy. Shoppers Drug Mart cares about Canadian and their heart health, and they have a special goal this month of helping Canadians to take better care of their heart.
Even though I am 45 years old, I have had my heart checked by ultrasound and echo cardiogram several times over the years. I have had special tests done at ages 20, 28 and 34 and I am getting ready for another full heart check up. You see, when I was around age 20, it was discovered that our family carried a gene that could cause the heart to become enlarged, making it hard for the heart to pump blood through out its chambers and keep a normal heart rhythm. This genetic heart defect was found to affect my grandmother, my dad and my uncle, with my dad having the worst case in the family. So this has meant years of various treatments and drug therapies for my Dad, which has made our family very aware of heart rhythms and heart health. Because my Dad is a direct relative, my chances of having this defect lie around 50%. But with testing every 6-8 years, I have been lucky so far. However, heart health is that I care about and think everyone should be aware of.

Did you know that heart disease is one of the leading causes of adult deaths in Canada? So it's very important to be aware of what the risks are to heart health. Knowledge is power and knowing which lifestyle choices can increase your chances of having a healthy heart is something that every one should know. Several factors can affect heart health including: blood pressure levels, smoking, exercise and cholesterol levels. The Canadian Cardiovascular Society recommends calculating your cardiovascular age and knowing your cardiovascular risk profile so that you can take an active role in reducing your level of risk by managing blood pressure or cholesterol levels and making heart healthy lifestyle choices. Research shows that by knowing and understanding the cardiovascular age of your heart, steps can be take for better health management.

The Heart Age Calculator is an online tool featured on the Shoppers Drug Mart website and available to Canadians to help them assess their cardiovascular age through a series of simple lifestyle questions. This easy-to- use tool can quickly and easily determine one's risk of heart attack, stroke, or cardiovascular disease within the next 10 years And this tool is the only scientifically validated online tool available that provides a personalized heart age and cardiovascular risk profile as recommended by the Canadian Cardiovascular Society guidelines. This information can allow you to take charge of your heart health!

So guess what? I took the Heart Age Calculator test and I want to tell you how easy it was! It took me a mere few minutes and it gave me my complete risk profile. And now I know that I need to get more exercise to better take care of my heart and decrease my risk cardiovascular disease. My family took the test too and now we are all aware of our heart health status.  I want YOU to take action, take care of yourself and take the the test too! It will take less than 5 minutes of your time!

It's time to get heart healthy, so let's all encourage our family members, friends and neighbours to take the test too!

Show your heart some love and take the test HERE

In addition to taking the Heart Age Calculator Test, here are some other steps you can take to be Heart Healthy:

  • Stop Smoking
  • Monitor your blood pressure
  • Be active
  • Regular your cholesterol levels
  • Take Control.
So LOVE your heart! Take the time and DO the TEST!

Disclosure - Although this post has been sponsored by Shoppers Drug Mart Inc., the opinions and language are all my own, and in no way do they reflect the views, opinions or positions of Shoppers Drug Mart Inc. or its affiliates or licensees. Shoppers Drug Mart Inc. makes no representation as to accuracy, completeness, suitability or validity of any information within this blog post and will not be liable for any errors or omissions in this information or for any losses, injuries or damages arising from its display or use.

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