Bret Wilson

American Heart Health Month

How Healthy is Your Heart? 

Know your heart health status, and then you can make the changes you need to make.  The American Heart Association has started a new campaign to help people better access there heart health and then provide them with information to get their heart healthier.  The self assessment is termed Life’s Simple 7.  The proactive prevention part of the program is My Life Check.
To find out more and to get started on the program, go to the American Heart Association interactive website

Recognize The Signs

The most common sign of heart disease is sudden death.  No warning of chest pain, shortness of breath or pain in the upper body.  Perhaps too many people ignore the warning signs that their body is giving them or are unaware of their risks (see health status above!).  Chest symptoms are the most common indication of heart disease in both men and women, but women are slightly more likely to experience the less common signals.  These include shortness of breath, nausea/vomiting, and back or jaw pain.

If you have these signs, or recognize them in someone close to you, seek medical attention immediately.  Heeding the early warning signs and getting proper medial attention can prevent damage, disability or death.  Better to find out that it was not a heart attack, than to delay and find out the hard way that you should have acted sooner.

St. Valentine’ Day is Heart Healthy

Expressing your love to your sweetheart is not only a celebration of the holiday but can have a positive effect on your health.  Studies over the years have shown greater health of people who are in loving relationships.  Love and intimacy is important for our emotional health and our physical health.  Women who are in attached secure relationships have stronger immune systems (Psychosomatic Medicine 69:40-46, 2007).  Higher ratings of usefulness to family and friends reduced the risk of chronic illness in those individuals (the McArthur Study of Successful Aging).  A recent study indicated that men having sex on a regular basis (defined in the study as twice weekly) are 45 % less likely to develop life threatening heart conditions American Journal of Cardiology January 15, 2010, Volume 105, Issue 2, Pages 192-197.   Celebrate the loving relationships in your life and you may well have more life to celebrate. 

Dr. Bret Wilson

American Heart Health Month
By Dr. Bret

February is American Heart Month.  Each year 300,000 Americans die of sudden cardiac death.  This tragedy is compounded by the realization that the heart disease that precedes many of these deaths is preventable by making better health choices.