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How Healthy is Your Heart?

Coronary Artery Disease (CAD), which develops when plaque builds up in your coronary arteries, is the most common form of heart disease in the U.S. It can lead to angina (chest pain that occurs when not enough oxygen is getting to the heart), an irregular heartbeat, a heart attack or even heart failure. Are you doing all you can to prevent CAD?

What are the risk factors for CAD? When it comes to CAD, there are both risk factors you can control and ones that are out of your hands, such as your age, gender, race and family and personal cardiac history. The ones you can control include:

  • Blood cholesterol and blood pressure

  • Management of diabetes, if applicable

  • Weight and your physical activity level

  • Whether you smoke

How can I keep my heart healthy?

Regardless of your current heart health, there are steps you can take to maintain or improve your current health. These include:

  • Maintaining a healthy diet, managing your weight and exercising regularly

  • Managing your blood pressure and cholesterol

  • Not smoking – or quitting if you do

  • Managing prediabetes and diabetes, if applicable

  • Controlling stress and limiting alcohol

  • Taking medications as prescribed

  • Visiting your doctor regularly

What are the symptoms of CAD?

You should speak with your doctor if you have any of the following:

  • Chest pain

  • Nausea

  • Palpitations and a quickened heartbeat

  • Shortness of breath

  • Sweating

  • Weakness or dizziness

Have you been diagnosed with CAD?

Depending on your Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey plan, you may have access to our Chronic Care Program. Check with your benefits administrator to determine if you’re eligible.

This information has been created and supplied to you courtesy of Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey. The information is general in nature and is intended to provide you with increased understanding of the topics discussed to help you and your family get and stay healthy. It is not intended as a substitute for the professional advice and care of your doctor. If you have any questions or concerns about your health or the health of any of your family members, contact your doctor.