The most recent data available from the American Heart Association reveals that heart disease is the #1 cause of death in Tennessee, accounting for approximately 23% of all deaths. Stroke isn’t too far behind, ranking as the #5 cause of death in Tennessee.
Join us as we resolve to help Nashvillians take control of manageable risk factors that increase risk for heart attack and stroke.
Understanding Heart Disease & Stroke Risk Factors
The risk factors for heart disease and stroke include:
- Smoking: One in four Tennessee adults is currently a smoker. (Compare that to 19% of U.S. adults.) The good news is, this risk factor can be managed. Talk to your primary care doctor at St. Thomas Medical Group to learn about your smoking cessation options.
- Insufficient Exercise: Only 37% of Tennessee adults get 150+ minutes of aerobic physical activity per week. This is the minimum exercise recommendation for reducing risk of heart disease. We completely understand that between the cold weeks we’ve experienced this winter, it can be a challenge to get exercise. As an alternative, check out these five winterproof exercise classes in Nashville!
- Being overweight or obese: Did you know that you can experience clinically meaningful results in reducing your risk for cardiovascular disease by losing and maintaining just 3-5% of your body weight?
What Is Heart Disease?
If you’re like most people, you may have a general understanding of heart disease, but aren’t entirely sure what exactly it is. “Heart disease” is actually an umbrella term used to describe several different conditions that negatively affect heart health.
Some forms of heart disease are caused by defects present at birth (congenital heart defects). Others are related to problems with heart rhythms (known as “arrhythmias”). One of the most common forms of heart disease is coronary artery disease.
Coronary artery disease occurs when the arteries that supply the heart with blood become hardened and blocked with plaque buildup. This plaque can develop slowly over the course of many years. It’s often the case that patients don’t even know they have severe blockages in their arteries until they suddenly experience heart attack-like symptoms (such as chest pain) or go in for a routine screening.
What Can You Do?
From changing diet and exercise habits to reducing environmental factors like stress, there is a lot that patients can do to reduce risk of heart disease and stroke! At St. Thomas Medical Group, physicians partner with patients to help identify and encourage healthy lifestyle changes. We’re on your team.
Take Control of Your Heart Health – Primary Care In Nashville, TN
St. Thomas Medical Group offers comprehensive adult primary care services. See a primary care doctor to find out how you can reduce your risk for heart disease and stroke in Nashville.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that 80% of deaths from coronary artery disease can be attributed to preventable risk factors. At least 200,000 deaths from cardiovascular disease could be prevented each year.
Another study found that 4 out of 5 Americans had “at least one modifiable risk factor for cardiovascular disease,” and that many related deaths could have been prevented.
Together we can help Nashville reduce deaths and adverse events caused by heart disease. It starts with you! For more information or to schedule an appointment with a primary care physician at St. Thomas Medical Group, call +1 (615) 301-7040.