Most cardiovascular diseases are easily preventable. Damage to the arteries develops gradually and builds up over time. However, more than 17 million people die each year from cardiovascular diseases, reports the World Health Organization, and about 30 percent of these fatal events went on without treatment, according to the American Heart Association.
We are dedicated to each of our client’s heart. Our Premier Health and WEA Signature series of products include a myriad of benefits that ensure our clients will receive the best care from our first-class network of local and international providers in the event of an unforeseen cardiovascular event. These benefits allow our clients to work with their primary care doctors to manage and prevent diseases and stay healthy.
The experts agree that making some changes in our daily habits can go a long way to avoid cardiovascular problems. “We have a huge window of opportunity throughout our lifetime to prevent heart disease with healthy habits. It is best to start early,” declares Doctor Seth Martin, a cardiology expert at Johns Hopkins, one of the best medical institutions in the world and affiliated with Punta Pacifica Hospital, a PA Group medical care regional provider. Yet, some of the risks factors of cardiovascular disease cannot be controlled only with behavior modifications. They may require medications or specialized procedures to correct them. That is why it is very important to count with a health plan that includes preventive or wellness benefits.
Being heart healthy is a lifelong journey that starts with you, making changes in your daily habits and securing a health plan that will support you in this goal during the course of your life.
Make Changes Today: Be Heart Healthy at Any Age
(excerpt from The Heart Smart Guide published by Johns Hopkins)
In your 20s and 30s
- Don’t smoke or quit smoking
- Keep or start a Healthy Diet (low saturated fat, lean protein, lots of vegetables and fruits)
- Try different sports or physical activities
- Find healthy stress outlets— stay away from alcohol, emotional eating or binge-watching TV
- Cool down—angry people die younger (a Johns Hopkins study on young men shows that men with angry temperaments are 3x more likely to develop premature heart disease and have a 5x higher risk of having a heart attack)
In your 40s
- Keep moving—“sitting is called the new smoking,” Dr. Martin says. Take a break every hour while working or watching TV. Stand up and move.
- Make time for home-cooked meals
- Don’t forget to keep track of your numbers—Blood Pressure, Cholesterol, Blood Sugar and General health
- Watch your weight
- Avoid ‘Self-Medicating’ when you are under stress. Taking drugs that have not been prescribed create new problems. All medicines have side effects.
- Try yoga, meditation or other forms of exercise to deal with stress
In your 50s
“This is when you need to focus on your numbers because your risk of heart problems is increasing dramatically,” says Johns Hopkins expert Bill McEvoy, MD. “See your doctor to get screened and talk about your risk and appropriate care to take,” continued McEvoy. “Your doctor can work with you to interpret your key numbers for cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar, and assess your risk for future heart problems.”
- Continue making good choices
- Report unusual symptoms to your doctor, not all heart-related conditions first show up as chest pain. Some symptoms that can also flag a heart problem are fatigue, leg cramps and nausea
- Don’t ignore sleep problems. Sleep Apnea is related to heart disease
In your 60s
“There comes a point, often in your 60s when in addition to lifestyle options, you have to consider medicines to control blood pressure and other conditions, depending on what your overall risk is,” says Martin.
- Discuss your risk of heart attack and stroke with your doctor
- Keep trying—make lifestyle changes if you haven’t. It is never too late
- Manage chronic diseases. Follow your doctor’s advice. Control blood sugar. Drink your medication
- Add or Keep Exercising—prevent muscle loss
In your 70s
Our plans offers protection or coverage to clients in their 70s.
- Be sure all doctors are up to date with your medical history
- Don’t ignore symptoms—time makes a difference
- Keep up preventive care—vaccines
We Can Help: Our Plans Offer Wellness Benefits & Top Providers
For our Premier Health or WEA Signature plans that offer wellness benefits, your deductible is waived for this benefit when applicable. The wellness exam gives you the chance to speak to a doctor about changes in your body or any health concerns you may have. Take advantage of this benefit and take control of your health. In addition, our plans offer the opportunity to receive care from top providers worldwide. Here are some providers that specialize in cardiovascular care:
- Punta Pacifica Hospital, Panama: Cardio Vascular Center & Chest Pain Center
- Austral Hospital, Argentina: Institute of Cardiology and Cardiovascular Therapy
- Samaritan Hospital, Sao Paulo, Brazil: Specialized in cardiological emergencies (Plus! Some extra tips from Samaritan Hospital: Heart disease: a silent danger – only available in Portuguese)