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Healthy Habits, Happy Heart

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, heart disease is the leading cause of death among men and women in the U.S. In fact, about 647,000 Americans die from heart disease each year, accounting for one in every four deaths.

“Heart disease is a major cause for concern within the African American community,” said Dr. Branden P. Turner, a family medicine physician with Kaiser Permanente Baldwin Hills-Crenshaw Medical Offices. “As such, African American men and women need to better understand the causes of cardiovascular disease so that they can live longer and lead healthy lives.”

With February being American Heart Month, Kaiser Permanente West Los Angeles offers lifestyle tips to help maintain good health and a strong heart:

Manage Stress

Building resilience and managing stress are more important than ever, not only for your heart health but your total health. Kaiser Permanente has many resources to help you manage stress, such as guided meditations, self-care tools, and mindfulness and wellness resources.

Don’t Forget Your Screenings

It’s essential you don’t miss your preventive screenings and don’t delay health treatments if you’re experiencing a problem. Be sure to keep on top of your medications through Kaiser Permanente’s mail order prescription service on If you’re over 50 and haven’t had your cholesterol checked in the last 18 months or seen your doctor, make a virtual health appointment on today.

Follow 5 Simple Steps for a Healthier Heart

Step 1: Get between 7 to 9 hours of sleep.

Step 2: Reduce your sitting time by moving more throughout the day

Step 3: Floss! That’s right, who knew that flossing keeps the bacteria from inflaming the blood vessels and heart.

Step 4: If you smoke, find strategies to help you quit.

Step 5: Aim for a healthy blood pressure under 120/80.

“One thing is certain,” Dr. Turner noted. “Heart disease should be taken seriously. The action you take today will have a big impact as to what happens to you in the future.”

For more information about heart health, please visit

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