VCU HR Well-Being blog

Giving VCU employees the wellness resources they need to be healthy both on and off campus

Follow these simple guidelines, say Northwell Health cardiologists and authors of Heart Smart for Women Stacey E. Rosen, MD and Jennifer H. Mieres, MD.

Smart Choices

Habits like exercising and eating a heart-healthy diet can lower your heart disease risk by up to 80%. But it’s also important to find a doctor who can work with you to reduce and control risk factors.

Did you know…..55% of the calories in our diets come from ultra-processed foods. The more calories you get from packaged items high in sugar, salt, saturated fat, and preservatives, the worse your heart health. The biggest culprits: flavored Chips, white bread, frozen foods. Trade one of these a week for a whole food versions (veggies and fruits, whole grain bread).


Lack of sleep is linked to risk factors like high blood pressure and inflammation. Make over your sleep habits: Avoid electronics before bedtime, and keep the same sleep schedule seven days a week.


Studies show that chronic stress can worsen heart disease and symptoms and increae the risk of heart attack. Do what calms you – a long walk, yoga, or meditation – or consider a therapist.

Savor Life

Women tend to put their own health needs last. Schedule “me time”. Laugh a lot, treat yourself to a massage, or learn something new. Practicing self-care is one key to a a healthy body and mind.


Women with supportive friends and family are more successful in achieving and maintaining their health goals. Urge loved ones to join you in heart-smart routines and stay on the path to a long, healthy life.

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