February 2021: American Heart Month

Heart disease doesn’t happen just to older adults. It is happening to younger adults more and more often. This is partly because the conditions that lead to heart disease are happening at younger ages.


February is American Heart Month, the perfect time to learn about your risk for heart disease and the steps you need to take now to help your heart.





Heart disease—and the conditions that lead to it—can happen at any age.

High rates of obesity and high blood pressure among younger people (ages 35–64) are putting them at risk for heart disease earlier in life.


Nearly half of all Americans have at least one of the top three risk factors for heart disease: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and smoking.


You Could Be at Risk

Many of the conditions and behaviors that put people at risk for heart disease are appearing at younger ages:

  • High blood pressure. Millions of Americans of all ages have high blood pressure, including millions of people in their 40s and 50s. About half of people with high blood pressure don’t have it under control. Having uncontrolled high blood pressure is one of the biggest risks for heart disease and other harmful conditions, such as stroke. (Read about NMHC's role in improving hypertension control

here.)

  • High cholesterol. High cholesterol can increase the risk for heart disease. Having diabetes and/or obesity, smoking, eating unhealthy foods, and not getting enough physical activity can all contribute to unhealthy cholesterol levels.

  • Smoking. More than 35 million U.S. adults are current smokers, and thousands of young people start smoking each day.3,4 Smoking damages the blood vessels and can cause heart disease.

Other conditions and behaviors that affect your risk for heart disease include:

  • Obesity. Carrying extra weight puts stress on the heart. More than 1 in 3 Americans—and nearly 1 in 6 children and adolescents ages 2 to 19—have obesity.5

  • Diabetes causes sugar to build up in the blood. This can damage blood vessels and nerves that help control the heart muscle. More than 1 in 10 people in the United States have diabetes.6

  • Physical inactivity. Staying physically active helps keep the heart and blood vessels healthy. Only 1 in 4 adults meet the physical activity guidelines of getting 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity per week.7

  • Unhealthy eating patterns. Most Americans, including children, eat too much sodium (salt), which increases blood pressure.8 Replacing foods high in sodium with fresh fruits and vegetables can help lower blood pressure. Only about 1 in 10 adults get enough fruits and vegetables each day.9,10 A diet high in trans fat, saturated fat, and added sugar increases the risk factor for heart disease.

4 Ways to Take Control of Your Heart Health


You’re in the driver’s seat when it comes to your heart. Learn how to be heart-healthy at any age.


Don’t smoke. Smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in the United States. If you don’t smoke, don’t start. If you do smoke, learn how to quit.


Manage conditions. Work with your health care team to manage conditions such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol. This includes taking any medicines you have been prescribed. Learn more about preventing and managing high blood pressure and high cholesterol.


Make heart-healthy eating changes. Eat food low in trans fat, saturated fat, added sugar, and sodium. Try to fill at least half your plate with vegetables and fruits, and aim for low sodium options. Learn more about how to reduce sodium.


Stay active. Get moving for at least 150 minutes per week.11 You can even break up the exercise into 10-minute blocks for a total of 30 minutes in a day. Learn more about how to get enough physical activity.

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Northeast Family Health

1506 Crown Drive       

Kirksville, MO  63501

Phone:  (660) 627-4493

Hours: M, T, TH: 7:30 a.m.-6 p.m.

Wed: 7:30 a.m.-5 p.m.

Fri: 8 a.m.-12 p.m. & 1 p.m.-5 p.m.

 

Diabetes & Nutrition Center

1506 Crown Drive

Kirksville, MO  63501

Phone: (660) 627-4493,  Ext. 412

Hours: 8 a.m.-12 p.m. & 1 p.m.-5 p.m.

Edina Family Health

104 E. Jackson

Edina, MO  63537

Phone: (660) 397-3517

Hours: 8 a.m.-12 p.m. & 1 p.m.-5 p.m.

Northeast Dental 

402 W. Jefferson Suite C

Kirksville, MO  63501

Phone:  (660) 665-2741

Hours: 8 a.m.-12 p.m. & 1 p.m.-5 p.m.

Kahoka Dental 

248 N. Morgan

Kahoka, MO  63445

Phone: (660) 727-1500

Hours: 7 a.m.-4 p.m.

Northeast Family Health - Milan 

52334 S. Business Highway 5

Milan, MO  63556

Phone: (660) 265-1042

Hours: 8 a.m.-12 p.m. & 1 p.m.-5 p.m.

Macon Family Health & Macon Dental

209 N. Missouri

Macon, MO  63552

Phone:  (660) 395-5045

Hours: 8 a.m.-12 p.m. & 1 p.m.-5 p.m.

 

Northeast Behavioral Health 

1410 Crown Drive

Kirksville, MO 63501

Phone: (660) 627-3621

Hours: 8 a.m.-12 p.m. & 1 p.m.-5 p.m.

 

OB/GYN Specialty Group 

402 W. Jefferson Suite B

Kirksville, MO 63501

Phone: (660) 665-3555

Hours: 8 a.m.-12 p.m. & 1 p.m.-5 p.m.

Kirksville Veterans Clinic

506 Rosewood Drive

Kirksville, MO 63501

Phone: (660) 627-8387

Hours: 8 a.m.-12 p.m. & 1 p.m.-5 p.m.

Northeast Pediatrics 

402 W. Jefferson Suite A

Kirksville, MO  63501

Phone:  (660) 627-2229

Hours: 8 a.m.-12 p.m. & 1 p.m.-5 p.m.

 

Business Office

1416 Crown Drive

Kirksville, MO  63501

Phone: (660) 627-5757, Ext. 5

Hours: 8 a.m.-12 p.m. & 1 p.m.-5 p.m.

 

Administrative Offices 

1416 Crown Drive

Kirksville, MO  63501

Phone:  (660) 627-5757 

Hours: 8 a.m.-12 p.m. & 1 p.m.-5 p.m.

This health center is a Health Center Program grantee under 42 U.S.C 254b, and deemed Public Health Service employee under 42 U.S. C. 233(g)-(n)

 

Northeast Missouri Health Council is a FTCA deemed facility. Malpractice coverage is provided under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 233(g)-(n).

 

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