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Take care of your heart for Valentine
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Valentine’s Day is a great time to take a look at the state of your heart as well as the hearts of your loved ones.
 This is more important than passing out candy and paper hearts. Coronary heart disease remains the leading cause of death in the United States and the causes of this disease are not a mystery. Healthy habits can help prevent disease and markedly improve a person’s life.
February is National Heart Month. Are you one of the more than 70 million Americans who currently have some form of cardiovascular disease? One person dies every 35 seconds from cardiovascular disease. That’s more than 910,000 Americans every year and equates to 40 percent of all U.S. deaths. In 2004, Georgian’s cardiovascular disease death rate was 14 percent higher than the national rate due mainly due to preventable risks such as smoking, diet, high blood pressure, physical inactivity, high cholesterol and obesity.
Some people believe the path to heart disease begins in their middle years. But it doesn’t, it begins in childhood. Obesity and high blood pressure are becoming common in children and young adults. By introducing the concepts of regular exercise, good nutrition and avoiding smoking, children can make heart-healthy habits part of lives for the rest of their lives.
Heart attack and stroke are life-and-death emergencies when every second counts. If you, or someone with you, suspect you’re having a heart attack, call 9-1-1 immediately. Not all symptoms occur in every heart attack or stroke and symptoms may sometimes go away and return. Check the time when the symptoms appeared. Clot-busting drugs can stop some heart attacks and strokes in progress, reducing disability and saving lives, but these drugs must be given relatively quickly.
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