American Heart Association Urges Cardiovascular Health Awareness During National Hispanic Heritage Month

Heart disease is the No. 1 killer for all Americans and stroke is the fourth leading cause of death. Hispanics and Latinos, however, face an increase incidence of cardiovascular diseases because of higher risk for health issues including high blood pressure, obesity and diabetes. The American Heart Association | American Stroke Association is urging families to talk about their risks for heart disease and stroke throughout National Hispanic Heritage Month, September 15th-October 15th.

Cardiovascular disease is a major concern for the Latino population. With over one-third of the Mexican American populations having cardiovascular disease, it’s vital to learn how to recognize heart disease and stroke while also taking steps to reduce your risk for these deadly—yet preventable—diseases.

Nearly 78% of Mexican Americans, age 20 and older, are considered overweight or obese while over 22% of Hispanics age 18 and older suffer with high blood pressure. Research also suggests that Hispanics are almost twice as likely to have diabetes as compared with non-Hispanic whites of a similar age.

Making simple changes can help you greatly reduce your risk for cardiovascular disease. By making healthier food choices, incorporating exercise and scheduling regular check-ups with your doctor, you can be proactive in your and your family’s wellbeing. By taking control of our health today, we can live longer, stronger lives in the future.

The American Heart Association offers these tips to start on the road to heart-health:

  • Choose lean meats and poultry without skin and prepare them without added saturated and trans fat.
  • Eat at least two servings of fish each week.
  • Cut back on foods containing partially hydrogenated vegetable oils to reduce trans-fat in your diet.
  • Cut back on foods high in dietary cholesterol.
  • Get active wherever you are. At home, take housework to the next level to get your heart pumping. Added benefit—you’ll be done faster! At work, take the stairs instead of the elevator.
  • Write down a list of questions and bring them with you to your check-up. This way you’ll have a reference and won’t forget something you were meaning to follow up on.

During National Hispanic Heritage Month, the American Heart Association suggests that families find time to discuss why they should care about cardiovascular health and find their motivation to be heart-healthy. The American Heart Association wants people to experience more of life’s precious moments. It’s why they’ve made better heart and brain health their mission. For the American Heart Association, LIFE IS WHY.

The Association also urges everyone to learn the warning signs of a heart attack and stroke and to call 9-1-1 immediately if you or someone around you exhibits any of the following:

Heart Attack Warning Signs:

  • Chest discomfort. Most heart attacks involve discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes, or that goes away and comes back. It can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.
  • Discomfort in other areas of the upper body. Symptoms can include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
  • Shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort.
  • Other signs may include breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness. Women may also have a tendency to experience other symptoms including indigestion, a tightness in the jaw or shoulder or an overwhelming feeling of anxiety.

Stroke Warning Signs:

F.A.S.T. is an easy way to remember the sudden signs of stroke. When you can spot the signs, you’ll know that you need to call 9-1-1 for help right away. F.A.S.T. is:

  • F Face Drooping – Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile. Is the person’s smile uneven?
  • A Arm Weakness – Is one arm weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
  • S Speech Difficulty – Is speech slurred? Is the person unable to speak or hard to understand? Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence, like “The sky is blue.” Is the sentence repeated correctly?
  • T Time to call 9-1-1 – If someone shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 and get the person to the hospital immediately. Check the time so you’ll know when the first symptoms appeared.

For more information or resources, visit http://www.heart.org

AMERICAN HEART ASSOCIATION ANNOUNCES BOARD AND HEART SAVER RECOGNITION DINNER

On Tuesday, September 23, the American Heart Association will host their annual Heart Saver and Board Awards Dinner at the Crest Hollow Country Club in Woodbury.

To begin the evening, the new Long Island American Heart Association Board members and officers will be sworn into office. New members of the board include; Rosevelie Marquez – Morales, Esq., Attorney, Harris Beach, LLP ; Louis Mastrianni, Market President, LI/Queens Middle Market & The Apparel Group, Commercial Banking, Chase, J.P. Morgan Bank, LLC; Martha C. Stark, Group Director & Senior Vice President, Signature Bank and Juan Vides, CEO/President, TechACS Corp.

The Board will take on the enormous task of steering the organization’s life-saving mission and keeping a promise to have an extraordinary impact on the public by empowering individuals and their loved ones to save lives, live healthier and become more educated about cardiovascular diseases and stroke.

Newly appointed Chair of the Long Island Board, Marc L. Hamroff, Esq., Managing Partner, Moritt Hock & Hamroff LLP will then assist Board President, Dr. Paul Harnick, Cardiovascular Medical Associates, PC along with Karen Acompora, The Louis J. Acompora Memorial Foundation, will present the Board and Heart Saver awards.

Heart Saver awards are presented to recognize those who’ve saved or attempted to save a life or individuals and organizations that have gone to extraordinary means to strengthen each link in the Chain of Survival. Various other awards which recognize individuals or companies for their outstanding service and dedication to the American Heart Association this past year will also be awarded throughout the evening.

If you would like to become involved with the American Heart Association, please visit www.heart.org/longisland.

Red Cap” Ambassador Prepares for Long Island Heart Walk

The American Heart Association is proud to have Brian McKee serving as the 2014 Long Island Heart Walk “Red Cap” Ambassador.  This year’s Long Island Heart Walk will be taking place on Sunday, September 21 at Jones Beach.

Brian McKee is a former New York City police officer, a husband, a father of three young children and a survivor of a cardiac arrest.  On March 5, 2013, Brian was working out with his partner in the NYC Police Academy training for a Spartan race at Citi Field.  Part of their workout involved climbing the stairs.   When they reached the basement of the academy, Brian grabbed his knees, collapsed and went into cardiac arrest.  His partner immediately started CPR and called for help.

Luckily for him, there was a police officer in the building trained to use an AED which was located in the hallway of the building.  After shocking him 4 times, Brian’s heart beat returned.   Brian considers himself very lucky to have survived and credits that survival to the fact that his partner was trained in CPR and that there was an AED easily available.  The AED that saved his life was only installed 4 year prior, a fact that Brian thinks about constantly.  Brian is proud to serve as the 2014 Long Island Heart Walk Red Cap Ambassador and hopes to help raise awareness and support for CPR training and increased availability of AED’s.  

A “Red Cap” is a red baseball cap featuring the American Heart Association logo.  “Red Caps” refer to survivors of heart attack, cardiac arrest or heart surgery who wear the red caps as a symbol of their survival while walking in the Heart Walk.  “White Caps” will be distributed to stroke survivors the day of the walk.  Pediatric cardiovascular disease survivors will receive red super hero capes to acknowledge their courage.  Hundreds of survivors from across Long Island participate to show that heart disease and stroke can be beaten.

The American Heart Association estimates there are more than 71 million Americans alive with one or more types of cardiovascular disease.

As Red Cap Ambassador for the Long Island Heart Walk, Brian will help create awareness about the importance of survivors participating in the event and to create awareness that heart disease and stroke aren’t “just an older man’s diseases.”

On Sunday, September 21, 2014, join our “Red Cap” Ambassador and thousands of other survivors, families and friends from all over Long Island at the Long Island Heart Walk at Jones Beach, Field 5.

The annual success of the Long Island Heart Walk is due in part to national sponsor, Subway. Local sponsors include TD Bank, Astoria Bank, Vita Coco, Cohn Reznick, EVO Payments Intl., Winthrop University Hospital, Luxottica and Catholic Health Services. Local media sponsors are News 12 Long Island, WBAB 102.3-FM and WBLI 106.1-FM.brian mckee photo

For more information about the Long Island Heart Walk taking place on Sunday, September 21 call the American Heart Association at 516-450-9104 or visit us at www.longislandheartwalk.org

Healthy Eating Tips for College Students

The American Heart Association and American Stroke Association encourage college students to maintain a heart-healthy lifestyle.

Heading back to school and dreading the all-you-can-eat cafeteria? First year and fearing the “Freshman 15”?  Staying healthy in college is more than just fitting into your skinny jeans—it can seriously help you later on in life.

Why care now, you ask?  The American Heart Association says ‘Life is Why.’ Here’s a lesson you don’t want to forget: nearly 68 percent of U.S. adults are overweight or obese, and obesity is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke, the nation’s No. 1 and No. 4 killers.

Check out this ‘study guide’ to help your health exam.

Did you check in?  After you’ve successfully updated your status on your social networks, pop over to this online tool to check your calories.  Managing weight is a simple equation of burning as many calories as you take in.  Use the app, manage your weight and continue to update your status.  www.heart.org/MyFatsTranslator.

  1. Sorry to sound like a broken record, but eat your fruits and veggies.  Mom and Dad were on to something when they taught you to eat an apple a day.  The American Heart Association recommends filling half your plate with fruits and/or vegetables at every meal.  Fruits and vegetables are low-calorie, nutrient-rich foods that keep you satisfied and may help you maintain weight, cholesterol and blood pressure.      
  2. Stay hydrated my friends.  Water is the best way to stay hydrated.  Reach for water instead of sugar-sweetened beverages like soda and sports drinks, which add extra calories with little nutritional value.  Plain water too boring?  Try sparkling water or add fruit wedges to jazz it up.
  3. Put down the double bacon cheeseburger.  It sounds like a delicious option after that all-nighter you pulled, but your heart won’t be happy with you.  Instead, reach for a grilled turkey burger piled high with veggies like avocado, tomato, onions and lettuce. In other words, choose lean cuts of meat and poultry without skin and extra fat removed.  Opt for grilled, baked, broiled, poached or roasted (we promise, it’ll still taste delish!)
  4. Something sounds fishy!  We’re talking about that deep-fried, breaded basket that you took in the cafeteria line.  Instead, try baked, broiled or grilled fish (especially the oil kind, like salmon or trout) twice a week.  
  5. Slow down there, slugger.  Let’s just say, drink in moderation.  Alcohol contains a lot of empty calories and can have other negative effects on your health.  The American Heart Association recommends no more than one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men.  Tiny umbrella optional.
  6. Stuff your face!  With healthy snacks, that is!  In between classes and studying, it’s sometimes hard to find healthy options.  So when you need a bite, stuff your face with fresh fruits and veggies, unsalted nuts and seeds, and low-fat whole-grain crackers.
  7. Strike a (yoga) pose.  Put down the cupcake and fight your stress without food.  If you’re feeling overwhelmed, try yoga, take a walk, go to the gym or call friends or family.  Remember, you’re allowed to take breaks from studying in order to recharge.
  8. We like to move it, move it.  Cue the dance music, lace up those running shoes or grab a Frisbee.  No matter how you like to move it (move it!), maintaining weight is about burning the same amount of calories as you consume.  Developing a regular exercise routine (at least 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week) is the best way to burn additional calories and manage stress.
  9. Take your phone out.  No, not to tweet.  To check your portions.  One of the easiest pitfalls for college students is all-you-can- eat cafeterias.  Portion control can help you keep track of the foods you are consuming without going overboard.  For instance, a serving of chicken breast (3 ounces) is about the size of a smart phone and a medium banana is about the size of a pencil.  For more portion comparisons, check out www.heart.org/PortionDistortion.

Looking for more tips on maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle?  Visit www.heart.org/GettingHealthy.

 

Delicious ways to cook fresh ingredients offered in new American Heart Association cookbook

Go Fresh includes 250 recipes to help freshen up your family’s meals

Whether your kitchen is stocked with fresh produce from your local farmers market, the grocery store or your own garden this summer, the American Heart Association’s newest cookbook, Go Fresh, can provide you with healthy, easy recipes to use seasonal fruits and vegetables.

Go Fresh features 250 recipes, most of which take less than 20 minutes to put together and less than 30 minutes to cook.

Research shows that the more you cook at home, the easier it is to achieve or maintain a heart-healthy lifestyle.

According to the American Heart Association, a healthy diet and lifestyle is one of the best tools for fighting cardiovascular disease. Made with fresh ingredients can give the way you eat a whole new taste. This cookbook will show that eating nutritiously can be absolutely delicious and flavorful and that using fresh ingredients doesn’t take a lot of time.

The cookbook includes colorful, full-page photographs, nutritional information for all recipes, and helpful shopping and cooking tips. Recipes include Blueberry-Walnut Chicken Salad, Blackened Fish with Crisp Kale and Creamy Lemon Sauce, and Tomato-Basil Stuffed Pork Tenderloin.

Go Fresh is dedicated to Kelly Chapman Meyer, co-founder of the American Heart Association’s Teaching Gardens and national champion of getting people to eat more fruits and vegetables. American Heart Association Teaching Gardens teach students to plant seeds, nurture growing plants, harvest crops and ultimately better understand the value of good eating habits, challenging kids to make small changes to improve their health.

Go Fresh is available at Amazon.com, BarnesandNoble.com and wherever books are sold.

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Ed Blaskey Named Chairman of 2014 Long Island Heart Walk

Ed Blaskey, TD Bank’s Market President for Suburban NY and Long Island has been named Chairman of the American Heart Association’s 2014 Long Island Heart Walk.  This year’s walk will be taking place on Sunday, September 21 at Jones Beach in Wantagh.  

In this capacity, Mr. Blaskey is responsible for commercial lending activities and commercial deposit growth on Long Island, Westchester and the Lower Hudson Valley.

He has 33 years of banking experience and joined TD Bank in 2001 as Regional Vice President to help launch the Long Island Market for the Bank.  He was instrumental in expanding TD Bank Long Island’s retail franchise and commercial lending business lines.  Mr. Blaskey contributed to establishing the brand, model and culture of what has become America’s Most Convenient Bank.

“I am honored to serve as the 2014 Long Island Heart Walk Chairman” said Blaskey.  “I look forward to working with Executive Leaders across Long Island to help raise awareness and funds for the American Heart Association to continue its mission to build healthier lives, free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke”.

The Long Island Heart Walk supports a ground-breaking national American Heart Association movement to get America walking to live longer, heart-healthy lives.

For more information about the Long Island Heart Walk taking place on Sunday, September 21 call the American Heart Association at 516-450-9104 or visit us at http://www.longislandheartwalk.org.

Local sponsors include TD Bank, Astoria Bank, Vita Coco, Cohn Reznick, EVO Payments Intl., Winthrop University Hospital, Luxottica and Catholic Health Services. Local media sponsors are News 12 Long Island, WBAB 102.3-FM and WBLI 106.1-FM.

Ed Blaskey lives in Merrick with his wife Lisa. He has three children: Christopher, Mathew and Kimberly.

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Put Your Heart First – Join the American Heart Association’s Long Island Heart Walk to Save Lives

Heart Walk participants take healthy steps to stomp out heart disease and stroke

 More than four thousand Long Islanders are expected to join the American Heart Association’s Long Island Heart Walk on Sunday, September 21 to raise funds to fight heart disease and stroke, America’s No. 1 and No. 4 killers,. The annual event begins at 8:30 a.m. at Jones Beach, Field 5 in Wantagh, NY.

The non-competitive, three-mile walk includes teams of employees from local companies, along with friends and family members of all ages.

“For every hour of brisk walking, life expectancy may increase for some adults by two hours,” said Ed Blaskey, TD Bank’s Market President for Suburban NY and Long Island and Chairman of the 2014 Long Island Heart Walk.  “I look forward to working with Executive Leaders across Long Island to help raise awareness and funds for the American Heart Association to continue its mission to build healthier lives, free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke.”

Heart Walk participants will experience three “communities” that feature relevant resources and activities.

This year’s Long Island Heart Walk will once again feature interactive and compelling life-changing information and activities including a Kidz Zone-featuring face painting, caricatures, magician, craft, and games for kids and families, Eat Street-featuring heart healthy snacks before and after you walk, Team Photos-Grab everyone you’re walking with for a group picture! Mended Hearts, Red Caps & White Caps-All Heart Disease Survivors Receive a Red Cap! Stroke Survivors receive a White Cap!

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This year we are honored to have Brian McKee, Hicksville resident and survivor serve as our 2014 Red Cap Ambassador.  Jack Michael Foley, Franklin Square resident, born with a congenital heart defect is proud to serve as the 2014 Long Island Heart Walk Red Cape Ambassador, hoping to raise awareness for congenital heart defects and provide hope for other families.    

Research has shownwalking is the single most effective form of exercise to achieve heart health.The benefits of walking and moderate physical activity for as little as 30 minutes each day can help reduce the risk of heart disease.

The annual success of the Long Island Heart Walk is due in part to our national sponsor, Subway. Local sponsors include TD Bank, Astoria Bank, Vita Coco, Cohn Reznick, EVO Payments Intl., Winthrop University Hospital, Luxottica and Catholic Health Services. Local media sponsors are News 12 Long Island, WBAB 102.3-FM and WBLI 106.1-FM.

For more information about the Long Island Heart Walk taking place on Sunday, September 21st call the American Heart Association at 516-450-9104 or visit us at http://www.longislandheartwalk.org.