Are You Heart Smart? 

February 15, 2024
The words "Are You Heart Smart? Take this quiz to find out!" over a picture of a man after he is done working out.

What to Know for a Healthier Heart 

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States. One in five deaths is due to heart disease, even though the disease is largely preventable. 

Keeping your heart healthy starts with living a heart-healthy lifestyle. But first, you need to get smart about your heart. Knowing what causes heart disease, what puts you at risk for it, and how you can reduce those risks can help you make informed decisions to protect your heart and keep it strong. 

Want to test your knowledge? Take this short Heart Smart Quiz:  

Heart Smart Quiz 

  1. True or False? High blood pressure is also known as hypertension and occurs when your blood pressure is consistently 130/80 mm Hg or higher. 
  2. True or False? Your body mass index, or BMI, shows if your weight is in a healthy range for your height and is one measure of your future risk for heart disease. 
  3. True or False? Cholesterol helps make hormones, vitamin D, and substances to help you digest foods. Your body needs it for good health, but in the right amounts. 
  4. True or False? Eating lots of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains, using fat-free or low-fat dairy products, and limiting foods high in saturated fat or sugar-sweetened beverages are all part of a heart-healthy diet.  
  5. True or False? Not getting enough sleep or getting poor quality sleep on a regular basis increases the risk of having high blood pressure, heart disease, and other medical conditions.  
  6. True or False? To strengthen their heart, adults should aim to get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity such as brisk walking each week.  
Question 1: True 

Hypertension, also known as high blood pressure, develops when blood flows through your arteries at higher than normal pressures. Healthy blood pressure is less than 120/80 mm Hg. 

Question 2: True 

Body Mass Index, or BMI, is one measurement used to show if your weight is in the healthy range for your height. BMI measures body fat based on height and weight. Your BMI will fall into one of the four categories — underweight, healthy weight, overweight, or obese. 

Question 3: True 

Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance in your cells. Our bodies generally make all the cholesterol needed for good health. Cholesterol helps make hormones, vitamin D, and substances to help you digest foods. 

Question 4: True 

A nutritious diet is important to heart health. Here are four healthy eating tips for a heart healthy, well-balanced diet: 

  1. Eat vegetables, fruits, and whole grains 
  2. Include fat-free or low-fat dairy products, fish, poultry, beans, nuts, and vegetable oils 
  3. Limit foods that are high in saturated fat, such as fatty meats, full-fat dairy products, and tropical oils such as coconut, palm kernel, and palm oils 
  4. Limit sugar-sweetened beverages and sweets 
Question 5: True 

Getting enough quality sleep is important to heart health. There are four key sleep factors that are crucial to protect your heart health day and night: 

  1. Good, quality, uninterrupted sleep 
  2. 7-9 hours of sleep each night for adults 
  3. Regular bedtime and wake-up time everyday 
  4. Exposure to sunlight during the day 
Question 6: True 

Taking small steps, like getting more physical activity, can reduce your risk for heart disease. Whether it’s from getting your steps in, doing yoga, or strength training exercises, adults should aim to reach at least 150 minutes of exercise every week to keep our hearts healthy. 

How did you do? Knowing your own risk factors for heart disease can help guide your lifestyle choices, so talk to your healthcare provider to make sure you’re clear. Just as important: know your numbers. Your weight, waist size, blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar levels all affect your heart. If they aren’t where they should be, make a pledge to begin improving them.  

Adding more physical activity to your day, eating a heart-healthy diet, managing stress, getting enough quality sleep, and not smoking can put you on the path to better heart health.  

Learn more about heart disease prevention from The Heart Truth® at www.hearttruth.gov and download the Heart Smart Basics fact sheet to improve your knowledge about heart health. 

By CLS Health

CLS Health is a physician-owned comprehensive care group with over 33 locations and 160+ providers throughout the Houston area.

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