My family has a history of heart disease. It’s one cause my heart is into 100%, pun intended. Ever since I remember, my dad has been battling high blood pressure. He didn’t always take care of his body like he does now. With a little scare, a little age and a lot of little grandchildren and before long you are paying attention. February is heart health month and Shoppers Drug mart is encouraging you to take charge of your heart health.
My husband and I have a large family with heart disease history on both sides. It’s frightening. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in Canada and considering the circumstances, our chances of heart disease is higher than average. Rather than sit back and wait for something to happen, we have made the choice to educate ourselves and work towards heart health for our kids future. With 5 reasons, we want to grow old together and experience our children mature into adulthood with families of their own.
One summer day long ago, my husband, 14 years old at the time, and his whole immediate family were involved in a head on collision by a drunk driver as they were on their way to their annual family camping trip. Short of a few cuts and bruises the family went unscathed, all except my father-in-law who sat behind the wheel pinned and unconscious with head trauma. Fast forward years later after years to relearn how to walk, talk and do all the things he used to as a strong farming man, we sit today with the news of his 90% artery blockage and “just a matter of time” before he has a heart attack news. How did a fit and healthy man who worked hard all his life still end up with such extensive heart disease and decreased lifespan? Thankfully the accident allowed a glimpse into this underlying condition well before any issues arose, allowing my father-in-law to make lifestyle changes and increase his chances of a longer lifespan. Knowledge is power. Take charge of your health before it’s too late.
Depending on lifestyle and genes, your heart may be aging faster than you. You are immediately at higher risk if you already have other factors like diabetes, high cholesterol or are a smoker. We know as educated individuals that many things aren’t good for our health but did you realize these same things may actually age your heart faster than you age in years? The Canadian Cardiovascular Society encourages you to take charge of your heart health with the knowledge of your own cardiovascular health and heart age. Take the first step to a healthy heart by taking the Heart Age Calculator; know your heart age and act now towards better health so you can be around for your family.
According to the calculator, my heart age is actually younger than my age in years and although that seems impressive, that’s a bit of a false sense of security to me. I look at my children armed with the knowledge of hereditary heart disease and have made the choice to live a healthier lifestyle, including diet, exercise and regular check-ups.
Take charge of your family health; encourage your spouse to make the changes with you. Afterall, your little ones give you many reasons why you need to stick around for awhile.
Will you take the first step towards heart health with the Heart Age Calculator?
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.