Skip to main content

Heart Health for African American Women and What to Ask Your Doctor

It's American Heart Month, sis. 

Risk factors like obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, smoking and physical inactivity put Black women at a higher risk for heart disease. These factors can be controlled by lifestyle and dietary changes. So it's time to literally take the necessary steps to protect your heart. 



Other factors, like a family history of early heart disease can't be controlled. For women, heart disease becomes a risk factor at 55. That’s because, as the American Heart Association explains, after menopause, women are more likely to get heart disease. Partly, this is because their body no longer produces estrogen. Also, middle age is a time when women tend to develop other heart disease risk factors. That's even more incentive to take care of ourselves, physically and emotionally. 

Stress can also wreak havoc on our heart health. So make self-care a priority, whatever that looks like for you. Light some candles, put on your favorite playlist and soak in Epsom salts. Taking a socially distanced nature walk. Work in your garden. Take a yoga, dance or meditation class. 

Now that you've been reminded of some of the risk factors, here's a handy list of ten questions to ask your doctor during your next check up, from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI's Heart Truth for Women campaign

1. What is my risk for heart disease? 

2. What is my blood pressure? What does it mean for me, and what do I need to do about it? 

3. What are my cholesterol numbers? (These include total cholesterol, LDL, HDL, and triglycerides, a type of fat found in the blood and food.) What do they mean for me, and what do I need to do about them? 

4. What are my “body mass index” (BMI) and waist measurement? Do they mean that I need to lose weight for my health? 

5. What is my blood sugar level, and does it mean I’m at risk for diabetes? If so, what do I need to do about it? 

6. What other screening tests for heart disease do I need? 

7. What can you do to help me quit smoking? 

8. How much physical activity do I need to help protect my heart? 

9. What’s a heart healthy eating plan for me? 

10. How can I tell if I may be having a heart attack? If I think I’m having one, what should I do?


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Win a $50 Gift Card for Fall Fashion Trends on Amazon.com!

Tweens and teens aren't the only ones who need new clothes for fall.  We also need new tops, frocks, and trousers for work and play.  Fortunately, Amazon.com has launched the new Amazon Contemporary Shop to suit our grown-up fashion needs. Me (r) and a model (l) wearing a MINKPINK maxi skirt from Amazon.com. The online boutique is stocked with trendy clothing, shoes and accessories for women and men by designer brands like Halston Heritage, Twelfth St. by Cynthia Vincent, Rock & Republic, BCBGeneration and more. I even picked up a great pair of Heidi Klum for New Balance (HKNB) sneakers for under $55! So, are you ready to shop?  Everything She Wants will help one lucky reader jazz up her fall wardrobe with a $50 gift card to use online in the Amazon Contemporary Shop. Here's how to win: Retweet this post (if you don't have a Twitter account it's easy to sign up on Twitter.com) Subscribe to Everything She Wants via Google Connect, email or RSS Feed.

Giveaway: Thank Your Friends with Merci Chocolates!

National Friendship Day was August 4, 2013, but Everything She Wants has decided to continue the celebration with a giveaway from merci fine European chocolates . While some friendships are for a season or a reason, other friendships are built to last a lifetime.  I’m fortunate to have two best friends: Cindy, whom I’ve known since junior high school and Deanna, who started out as my amusing intern.  Besides my mother and my husband, these girlfriends are my greatest confidants.  They’re like the sisters I never had and we’ve supported each other through personal trials and triumphs. So what better way to say ‘thank you’ to your friends than with merci chocolates?  One lucky reader will win a ‘Friendship Kit’  that you can either keep to reward yourself for being such a great friend or share with a deserving comrade. The kit includes: $25 Target gift card (yay!) 7 ounce box of merci chocolates A picture frame to display a photo of you and your friends A choc

Conway Discount Clothing Chain Closing in New York City

It's the end of an era. Conway discount stores are closing . As of this weekend, a sign on the sole Herald Square location (34th Street btwn 7th and 8th Ave) says the store will close in "7 Days." Before I relocated to New York City, I was introduced to the discount chain while on a bus trip from Baltimore.  I recall the first time I saw Conway's signature pink bags carried by hurried shoppers in midtown. And Miss Foster, the trip organizer and a bargain hunter from way back, took me to the store for the first time. Conway store in the Fulton Mall./Tracy E. Hopkins When I moved here in 1994, my love affair with Conway continued.  I furnished my first apartment with discount knick-knacks and home goods from the store.  And much to my chagrin, in hindsight, I curated most of my wardrobe for my first full-time job from the long-shuttered 42nd Street and Third Avenue store. One regretful ensemble: Lime green and white checkered pants with a matching lime green