Approximately 50% of Americans have at least 1 of 3 major risk factors for cardiovascular disease. These include having high blood pressure or high cholesterol, or being a smoker. Below are recommendations from the Mayo Clinic along with information with ways to access services locally to help fight cardiovascular disease.

  1. If you use tobacco or tobacco products, quit. Good news – your risk of heart disease starts to drop within a day of quitting. If you would like to quit smoking, visit the SD Quitline for more information.
  2. Get Moving. The CDC recommends adults get 150 minutes of aerobic activity and at least 2 sessions of strength training each week. Short bouts of activity offer benefits to your heart. Five minutes of moving can help. If you want some help getting started FAMC has partnered with SDSU to bring evidence-based exercise classes to you in the comfort of your own home. Go to to sign up or get more information. If you feel you are not ready for exercise, talk to your primary care provider about a referral to therapy.
  3. Eat a Hearty-Healthy Diet. A heart-healthy diet plan included vegetables and fruits, beans, lean meats and fish, low-fat dairy food, whole grains, and healthy fats while limiting salt, sugar, processed carbohydrates, alcohol, and saturated and trans-fats.
  4. Maintain a Healthy Weight. Being overweight increases risk for heart disease. Again, even a small weight loss can be beneficial. Reducing your weight by 3-5% can help decrease triglycerides in you blood, lower blood sugar and reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes. If you need help with getting started on a healthy diet or managing your weight, FAMC dietitian, April Sorenson, can help get you on track.

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