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Heart Health

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) — including heart disease, stroke, and high blood pressure — is the number one killer of men and women in the United States. 

  • Heart disease is a term that includes several more specific heart conditions. 
  • The most common heart disease in the United States is coronary heart disease, which can lead to heart attack.

Know Your Risk!

Risk factors for heart disease and stroke include:

  • High blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose levels
  • Smoking
  • Inadequate intake of fruits and vegetables
  • Overweight and obesity
  • Physical inactivity

Taken together, these major risk factors account for around 80% of deaths from heart disease and stroke. The only way to know your level of risk is to be assessed by a healthcare professional and to be checked for factors such as your blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose levels, waist measurement and BMI. Once you know your overall risk, agree with your health care professional on a plan for specific actions you should take to reduce your risk for heart disease and stroke.

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Heart health part four: When diet and exercise aren’t enough

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Navy Hospital Corpsman 1st Class Harvey Canto measures medication in the pharmacy. In many patients, when diet and exercise are not enough to sufficiently improve blood pressure and cholesterol values, prescription medications have been proven to save lives. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Lacordrick Wilson)

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