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February is Heart Health Month

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in Wisconsin and the United States, accounting for more than 370,000 deaths each year. While the death rate from heart disease fell about 38 percent from 2003-2013, the burden and risk factors remain alarmingly high. February is American Heart Month, an excellent time to educate individuals that heart disease can often be prevented by making healthy choices and managing their health conditions. Heart disease is defined as all diseases of the heart and blood vessels and includes coronary heart disease, stroke, heart failure, hypertensive disease and atherosclerosis. Risk factors include overweight and obesity, high cholesterol and blood pressure, binge drinking, physical inactivity, tobacco use, and diabetes.

St. Croix County Public Health programs work hard to promote healthy living for all of our residents. The WiseWoman Program helps women reduce their risk for heart disease and improve overall health through screening services and 1:1 lifestyle coaching.

St. Croix and Pierce County Healthier Together initiatives increase access to physical activity opportunities in communities; and increase access to healthy food and help prevent chronic disease, risk factors, and reduce health disparities, through clinical and community linkages. As part of these efforts, St. Croix County Public Health Department is proudly participating in American Heart Month by taking this opportunity to raise awareness about heart disease and increase knowledge about prevention. Sharing this information is important because about 80 percent of cardiovascular disease can be prevented through everyday healthy living steps, including:

• not smoking

• physical activity

• good nutrition

• maintaining healthy weight

• controlling blood pressure, cholesterol and blood glucose levels

For more information about the WiseWoman Program visit sccwi.gov/publichealth or call 715-246-8365. For more information regarding Healthier Together, visit www.healthier2gether.org. Find St. Croix County Public Health and St. Croix and Pierce County Healthier Together on Facebook to keep up to date with current activities and health information.