February is Heart Health Month | SierraSun.com

February is Heart Health Month

Tahoe Forest Hospital offers a year-round personalized fitness program tailored specifically for senior citizens called Silver Steps. The program is designed to help senior men and women increase their physical stamina regardless their current fitness level, allowing for more enjoyment from daily activities, reduction of health risk factors, and enhance participants overall quality of life. The program focuses on cardio-respiratory endurance, muscular strength and endurance, flexibility, balance coordination, and body composition. Beginners are welcome!

Classes meet Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 7:15 a.m., 8:30 a.m., or 9:30 a.m. Participants may join the program any time. Classes are held in the Cardiac Rehabilitation Department located on the first floor of the main building at Tahoe Forest Hospital.

The cost of the program is $150 and includes 36 classes (12 weeks), a complete fitness assessment and personalized exercise counseling. For more information or to register call 582-3285.

Did you know that you can actually lower your risk of further heart problems, even if youand#8217;ve already experienced a heart attack? Tahoe Forest Hospital Cardiac Rehabilitation Department can help. Education and risk reduction programs can greatly improve your heart health.

Who should take part in Cardiac Rehab?

Doctors often prescribe Cardiac Rehab for people who have had a heart attack. But people with many types of heart or blood vessel disease can benefit from Cardiac Rehab.

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Rehab might help you if you have had heart failure, peripheral artery disease (PAD), angioplasty to open a coronary artery or another type of heart surgery, such as valve replacement.

The goals of Cardiac Rehab are to increase understanding about your condition and treatment; help you make the right lifestyle changes to decrease your risk of a heart attack or stroke and reduce the need for future surgery; increase your ability to perform your job and your daily or recreational activities; provide you and your family with the support and motivation you need to make important lifestyle changes.

The goals of cardiac rehab are different for each patient. In helping set personal goals, your health care team will look at your general health, personal heart problem, risks for future heart problems, doctorand#8217;s recommendations, and your own preferences.

Exercise training: To learn how to exercise safely, strengthen muscles, and improve stamina. Your exercise plan will be based on individual ability, needs and interests.

Education, counseling and training: To help you understand your heart condition and find ways to reduce risk of future heart problems. The Cardiac Rehab team will help you learn how to cope with the stress of adjusting to a new lifestyle and to deal with fears about the future.

Cardiac Rehab can reduce symptoms and chances of having more heart problems. Proven benefits are reduced (up to 25 percent) risk of fatal heart attack. There is decreased severity of angina and decreased need for medicines to control angina, a reduced need for hospitalization because of heart problems. Costs for doctor visits and hospitalizations are reduced by 35 percent for those who participate in Cardiac Rehab. Visits to the emergency room are also reduced. Decreased blood pressure offers the ability to do more activity with less effort (increased exercise tolerance).

You also improve cholesterol and triglyceride levels and decrease emotional stress, depression and anxiety. Weight loss occurs when exercise is combined with other changes in lifestyle, such as eating a balanced diet and blood glucose levels improve.

Cardiac Rehab has many other benefits: Exercise tones your muscles and improves your energy level and spirits. It helps both heart and body get stronger and work better. Exercise can get you back to work and other activities faster. You will feel better and have more energy.

Cardiac Rehab can help you quit smoking. Kicking the habit means less risk of lung cancer, emphysema, and bronchitis, as well as less risk of heart attack, stroke, and other heart and blood vessel problems. It means more energy, and it means better health for your loved ones.

Aerobic exercise helps improve the flow of oxygen-rich blood throughout your body. Strength training, such as using weights, improves your muscle strength and your stamina. Both types of exercise in the right amount are safe and important for your heart health.

Choose a heart-healthy lifestyle! For more information or to sign up call 582-3285.

Offered by Tahoe Forest Health System, Wednesdays from 9:30-10:30 a.m., Tahoe Forest Hospital and#8212; Eskridge Conference Room

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For more information please call (530) 582-3285.

To reach the Tahoe Forest Hospital District, 10121 Pine Ave., Truckee, 587-6011, http://www.tfhd.com