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The leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States is heart disease. But there is some good news, it is also one of the most preventable. Small changes in lifestyle can make a big difference in heart health. February is Heart Health Month and marks a great opportunity to adopt healthy lifestyle habits.

What can you do to lower your risk of heart disease?

Schedule an Appointment with Your Physician to Talk About Heart Health. It’s important to schedule routine check-ups even if you are not sick. Regular exams and tests can help find problems before they start.

Add Exercise to Your Daily Routine. A 10 minute walk just 3 times a day, 5 days a week can help lower your risk for heart disease. It will also help you look and feel better.

Increase Healthy Eating. Start off by cooking heart-healthy meals at home at least 3 times per week. Eating foods high in omega-3s, such as salmon, can improve blood pressure and cholesterol levels which will lower your risk of heart disease.

Quit Smoking and Stay Away from Secondhand Smoke. Smoking leads to a buildup of fatty material which narrows arteries and can cause a heart attack. If you currently smoke, quitting can significantly reduce your risk for heart disease and stroke.

Take Medication as Prescribed. Blood pressure and cholesterol play a crucial role in heart health. Taking medication as prescribed will help ensure your blood pressure and cholesterol levels stay in check.