February is American Heart Month Published Jan. 31, 2019 By Brian Duke 88th Air Base Wing Public Affairs WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio – The heart has always been a source of mystery. The Greeks thought it housed the spirit. To the Chinese, it was the center of happiness, and the Egyptians saw it as the source of intellect and emotion. Whatever your beliefs about the heart are, one thing is certain--if it stops, so do you. February is American Heart Month and taking care of your heart gains importance as heart disease is now the leading cause of death for men and women in the United States. The Civilian Health Promotion Services is hosting several events to inform and educate the base populace on the importance of heart health. The center is conducting a class titled, “Warning Signs of Heart Attack and Stroke,” where attendees can learn about warning signs, symptoms, risk factors and prevention methods for both heart attack and stroke. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention recently declared that heart disease, and the conditions that lead to it, are occurring in younger adults. High rates of obesity and high blood pressure among younger people, starting as early as 35 years of age, are putting them at risk for heart disease earlier in life. Half of all Americans have at least one of the top three risk factors for heart disease, that is, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and smoking. Healthfinder.gov, a website sponsored by the American Heart Association, offers some good news -- heart disease can often be prevented when people make healthy choices and manage their health conditions. To raise awareness about heart disease and how people can prevent it, the site offers a few ideas. Many can be started today, such as eating healthier foods, being more active and maintaining a healthy weight and drinking alcohol only in moderation. Quitting smoking and controlling your cholesterol are also important steps. Lastly, preventing and managing stress can help reduce risk of heart disease. “Warning Signs of Heart Attack and Stroke” classes are scheduled as follows: Tuesday, Feb. 5, 11:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m./ Building 1, Area A, FM Conference Room 131B Thursday, Feb. 7, 11:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m./ Building 262, Area A, Room B217 Thursday, Feb. 14, 11:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m./ Building 600, Area B, Global Hawk Conf. Room Thursday, Feb. 21, 11:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m./ Building 70, Area A, Conference Room A Wednesday, Feb. 27, 11:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m./ Building 16, Area B, Room 141 Anyone on base can attend and registration is not required. For more information, contact the CHPS office at (937) 904-9359. Find out more about the center’s health and wellness programs at https://civilian.afmcwellness.com.