Quick Facts for
By: Barbara Willenberg, MS,
Associate State Nutrition Specialist,
Family Nutrition Education Program
Nutrition and Lifeskills
for Missouri Families
What's it all about?
- Heart disease is America's number one
killer of both men and women.
- A heart attack occurs when an artery
carrying blood to the heart gets blocked-without oxygen-rich blood,
the heart muscle is damaged and can die.
- Arteries usually get blocked by a blood
clot that gets stuck in an artery that is already narrowed by a
build-up of plaque.
- Often, the first sign of heart trouble
is a heart attack.
Why worry now, I'm a teenager?
Good question. Here are several reasons why
teens should be concerned about heart disease:
- About one-third of young people ages 10
to 19 have blood cholesterol levels that are too high-this is a risk
factor for developing heart disease.
- When young men who died in the Korean
and Vietnam wars were autopsied, their arteries were already beginning
What causes my risk for heart
- High blood pressure.
- High blood cholesterol.
- Being overweight, especially carrying
extra fat around the stomach.
- Not getting much physical
- Heredity-having other people in your
family with heart disease.
What can I do to prevent heart
- Let the Food Guide Pyramid and the
Dietary Guidelines be your key to healthy eating.
- Eat more low-fat foods like fruits,
vegetables, beans, whole grain breads and cereals like oatmeal.
- Switch to skim or 1 percent milk.
- Eat lean cuts of meat and take the skin
off chicken and turkey.
- Get 30 minutes of moderate physical
activity every day, or most days.
Did you notice????
We can control many of the
things that cause heart disease,
like what we eat, smoking and getting enough physical activity.
Other Diet and Disease
Educational Support Materials:
Heart Disease Hypertension