For the past few years, I’ve been exercising at the gym to try to physically get back into shape. I’ll be 40 next year and I’m not getting any younger. In addition to my physical appearance, I’m starting to refocus on my health in general.My review schedule is tight right now (and backlogged thanks to the flu) but the Beautify Your Heart campaign that was presented to me by the Family Review Network was worth devoting some time to. According to literature I received from WomenHeart, heart disease is the leading killer of women in America. Heart attacks in women are a serious problem because there are often no prior symptoms – or worse, symptoms that are reported are misdiagnosed and/or mistreated. As part of the “Beautify Your Heart” partnership between WomenHeart and Metamucil, they are encouraging women to pledge to get a cholesterol screening. In support of the program, Metamucil is donating $100,000 to help fund heart disease education and patient advocacy programs.
Even without insurance, I maintain a schedule for my annual exams. But the one thing I haven’t done yet is get a baseline cholesterol exam. I’m not experiencing issues that would push me toward it, but it doesn’t hurt to get it checked. Has your doctor recommended you get a cholesterol screening? Not mine. Like everything else in our lives, if we want it done right, we need to do it ourselves. Seriously. As I mentioned in October 2007, I’ve become very proactive about the health of my family. Without insurance, I’ve asked a lot more questions about what tests are being performed and why. Along the way, I realized that you don’t need a doctor’s permission to have tests run. Companies like DirectLabs provide low-cost lab tests where you can request the labs on your own then either receive the results yourself or have them sent direct to your physician. For most people, getting a cholesterol screening requires just putting in a request to your physician. For those of us without insurance, it means calculating whether it’s a necessary expense. Since February is Heart Health Month, DirectLabs is running a special on their CardioPlus panel which includes all the things that WomenHeart recommends that you have tested – for $35. That’s less than dinner and a movie.
My cholesterol levels are something I hadn’t really started to look at but “Beautify Your Heart” really got me thinking about it. If you’re interested in learning more about heart health, swing by Beautify Your Heart. There are resources, information and tips. As a bonus, there is even a sweepstakes.
Spend a few minutes working to “Beautify Your Heart.” You may be surprised what you learn.