Departments: On My Mind
Section Editor(s): Bettmann, Michael A. M.D., F.A.H.A.; Editorial Board Chair, Heart Insight
February is American Heart Month, and our cover story this month is a great reminder that heart disease can affect just about anyone. Ellen Abramson was a mother of three who prided herself on eating healthy and keeping active when she had a heart attack at the young age of 51. Although Ellen watched what she ate and exercised regularly, she rarely went to the doctor and had no idea what her cholesterol or blood pressure levels were. Now recovered, Ellen keeps a closer eye on her health by using medications to control her cholesterol, and uses her story to educate women about heart disease. And she's determined to live each day to the fullest. Read Ellen's inspiring story on page 4. And remember, February 7 is National Red Wear Day! Find out more by visiting GoRedForWomen.org.
Most of us feel intimidated when we visit a doctor or other healthcare provider—we're often rushed in and out in minutes, with rarely enough time for a decent conversation. But to get the most out of your visit, you need to be prepared and then speak up! “You've Got Questions,” on page 9, provides tips and ideas for talking to your doctor so you get the information you need to stay healthy.
This month's HEART INSIGHT also takes a look at the Affordable Care Act Marketplaces in “Navigating the Insurance Sea” on page 12. If you haven't chosen a plan yet, don't despair—we'll clear up confusion about the law and help with what you need to know to make an informed decision.
“Life's Simple 7,” on page 16, provides information on modest lifestyle and behavioral changes that can lead you to a lifetime of good health. In this issue, you'll get tips on how to start a physical activity program; learn all about the AHA's Heart Healthy Diet Recommendations; find out how your smartphone or tablet can help you stay healthy; understand why blood pressure is so important; and find the best ways to deal with the urge to smoke once you've quit. And don't forget about our recipes, starting on page 20, which feature alternatives to some fast-food favorites.
Don't forget to visit us at HeartInsight.com and read our online-only bonus article, “Take a Stand Against Heart Disease in Women,” or download the HEART INSIGHT app for free and enjoy the entire issue on your device.
I'm very interested in hearing your thoughts and suggestions about how we can make this magazine even better, so please e-mail me at HeartInsight@wolterskluwer.com or write to HEART INSIGHT, Two Commerce Square, 2001 Market St., Philadelphia, PA 19103. You can also follow us on Twitter: twitter.com/Heart_Insight.
MICHAEL A. BETTMANN, M.D., F.A.H.A.
Editorial Board Chair, HEART INSIGHT