One of the commonly shared beliefs about heart attacks, heart disease, strokes and other heart health problems is that they’re not as widespread among women as they are among men.
In fact, it’s a myth that women don’t have the same risks as a man does when it comes to the heart. It’s also a myth that heart attacks can’t happen to women under the age of thirty. Quite the contrary, when it comes to heart health, women need to be especially vigilant.
Avoid High Blood Pressure
Although you can have a heart attack or heart disease without any signs or abnormal lab tests, what you need to know is that as a woman, certain risk factors can target your heart. These factors can cause you to end up with heart disease or damage to your heart from a heart attack.
Maintaining a normal blood pressure is as important for a woman’s heart as it for a man’s heart. High blood pressure is a sign that your heart is working too hard.
Get Lab Work Done Regularly
Watching your cholesterol level helps protect your heart. If you don’t have good cholesterol lab results, do what you can to fix this and keep your heart healthier. It’s as important to have good HDL levels as it is to have low LDL levels.
Get your triglycerides tested. This reading can be a warning sign that all is not well for your heart. The higher these are, the greater your chance of developing heart problems.
Watch Your Weight
You should also know what else puts you at risk for poor heart health. Not keeping your weight at a healthy level increases your chances of heart-related problems. For a woman, any extra weight around the mid-section is dangerous for the heart. Failing to exercise regularly and living a high-stress lifestyle with little time to relax can adversely affect the heart.
Get Enough Sleep
A lack of rest or prolonged periods of insomnia puts stress on the heart. One of the signs that your heart may not be at optimal health is if you feel fatigued a lot. Fatigue can be a warning sign that your heart isn’t working well and it can be a warning sign of a looming heart attack. If you suffer any unexplained fatigue, then you should be checked out by a doctor.
Women don’t always get the same heart attack warning signs that men get. For a woman, pressure in the chest doesn’t always occur when a heart attack is happening. Feeling sick to your stomach or having pain between your shoulder blades can be a sign of a heart attack on a woman.
Work to Reduce Your Ris
How can you protect your heart? If you’re currently a smoker, then take steps to quit. Smoking puts a lot of stress on your heart and can cause heart disease. Lose weight if you’re overweight and exercise regularly. Avoid things that can cause your blood pressure to elevate, like eating a diet high in salt and avoid drinking too much alcohol.
Do all that you can to reduce your risk. Having the right information and knowing what to do is important. The next step is putting these things into practice to maintain good heart health and overall wellness.