21 February 2011
Now that Valentine's Day is finished for another year, you might be tempted to forget all about matters of the heart. But leading doctors at Epsom and St Helier hospitals are urging local people to keep their heart in mind and to get involved with National Heart Month.
National Heart Month is an annual campaign from the British Heart Foundation, which runs throughout February. Its aim is to increase awareness of heart and circulatory disease and to raise funds for vital research, prevention and care.
The Trust's leading heart expert, consultant cardiologist, Dr Richard Bogle said: "Sadly, heart disease is now a very common illness, and figures show that someone in the UK has a heart attack every two minutes and one in three of those people will die within 24 hours.
"But, keeping your heart healthy doesn't have to be difficult and by following some very simple steps, you can have a really positive impact on your heart and your health in general."
This year, the British Heart Foundation has launched BEAT - a simple, four-step guide to keeping your heart healthy:
Dr Bogle added: "I would encourage everyone to have a think about BEAT, and to ask themselves if they could be doing a little more to keep their heart healthy. If there is something you would like to do to improve your health, whether that's stopping smoking or becoming more active, there's advice and encouragement available for you every step of the way.
"And of course, don't forget that you can still indulge in the things you enjoy. For example, research shows that a little dark chocolate and a modest intake of red wine can help to prevent heart disease as they are rich in antioxidants."
To take part in the online lifestyle check and for more details about keeping your heart in good shape, simply log onto www.bhf.org.uk.
You can also help to raise funds for the cause on Friday 25 February, with National Wear Red Day. To find out more, or to receive a fundraising kit, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0845 214 0976.
You can also find health tips and advice on the national NHS website, www.nhs.uk. And, if you need help or advice about stopping smoking, visit the NHS Smokefree website at www.smokefree.nhs.uk or ask your GP for help with quitting.