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Florida Health Encourages Small Steps To Healthy Hearts

By Florida Department of Health, Office of Communications

February 17, 2016

Florida Health Logo

Feb. 16, 2016



Communications Office
(850) 245-4111

Tallahassee, Fla.—February is American Heart Month and the Florida Department of Health encourages Floridians to learn about heart health and take action to keep their hearts healthy. Many forms of heart disease are preventable for people who know the risk factors and also know how to reduce their risk.

“We all must take the appropriate steps to be in control of our health – especially when it comes to our heart health,” said State Surgeon General and Secretary of Health Dr. John Armstrong. “By maintaining a healthy weight, eating unprocessed foods, and being active each day, we greatly improve our chances of having a healthy heart.”

Heart disease, also known as cardiovascular disease, refers to several types of heart conditions including, but not limited to stroke, chest pain (angina) and heart attacks that interrupt the flow of blood to the heart and brain. In 2014 heart disease was one of the top two leading causes of death in Florida, accounting for three out of 10 deaths each day.

The department encourages Floridians to take the time to learn more about how to keep their hearts healthy by maintaining a healthy weight and managing other risk factors for heart disease.

Actions you can take to reduce your risk include the following:

  • Maintain a healthy weight;
  • Quit smoking;
  • Be active at least 30–60 minutes a day;
  • Visit a physician for an annual checkup;
  • Monitor existing health conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol;
  • Practice effective stress management;
  • Reduce salt intake (sodium); and
  • Eat at least five to seven servings of fruits and vegetables every day.

Healthiest Weight Florida works to encourage and engage Florida residents to take small steps toward living a healthy life by making consistent, informed choices about nutrition and physical activity. In an effort to keep healthy habits in mind, Healthiest Weight Florida created Small Steps to Living Healthy, an email-based program that allows Floridians to sign up for weekly tips delivered directly to their inbox. These ideas are designed to help adults and children achieve or maintain a healthy weight. Register for Small Steps to Living Healthy and check out for other activities and resources to gradually incorporate into your life.

About the Florida Department of Health

The department works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.

Follow us on Twitter at @HealthyFla and on Facebook. For more information about the Florida Department of Health, please visit

About Healthiest Weight Florida

Healthiest Weight Florida is a public-private collaboration bringing together state agencies, not-for-profit organizations, businesses and entire communities to help Florida's children and adults make consistent, informed choices about healthy eating and active living. To learn more about how to be active and make nutritious food choices, visit