Shannon Young is and RN and manager of the Astria Cardiac and Pulmonary Rehab Gym.

She and gym participant "Base" Shirley stopped by the KIT Studio for a Heart Month reminder. Not so long ago Base was feeling low energy and with a family history of heart disease he decided to go in for a scan. Good call. Six heart bypasses later, Base is a gym rehab graduate and now a regular exerciser and volunteer.

Shannon Young's team conducts Heart Healthy Checks every Friday and for just $49 you can have a cardiologist check out your EKG, they also check your blood and screen for lipids.

Shannon took my blood pressure while Base was sharing his story and I am happy to say I showed a reading of 126 over 70.  The first number is the Systolic pressure or force in the arteries when the heart beats.  A perfectly normal reading is 120 or below so my number is somewhat elevated. High pressure is considered 130 to 139 or above.

The second number is the Diastolic pressure or the pressure measured between heartbeats. Below 80 is considered normal and my Diastolic pressure was 70.

I use an anti-cholesterol medicine and have significantly changed my diet and level of exercise in the past two months with my daily workouts at Achieve Health & Fitness and I have no doubt all that is helping a great deal.  My resting heart rate was 62 beats a minute and that is down as a direct result of this new regular exercise.

The last word on blood pressure is that much of it is in your control if you follow these American College of Cardiology guideline:

1.) Get regular exercise

2.) Focus on the DASH diet and potassium-rich foods

3.) Cut salt

4.) Limit Alcohol

5.) Lose Weight

6.) Don't Smoke

7.) De-Stress

Over time, elevated or high blood pressure weakens the heart, blood vessels and kidneys and makes a stroke or heart attack much more likely.

The ball is in your court.




Townsquare Media / John Taylor