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February 25, 2010

A Healthy Heart

Thursday Thirteen

This month All Romance eBooks is running a campaign for heart health. Twenty-eight authors (myself included) have donated short stories and all the proceeds go to the American Heart Association. I thought this week I’d cover snippets about heart health.

Thirteen Things About Hearts and Heart Health

1. The heart is a hard-working organ that pumps oxygen-carrying blood through the body. It functions like two pumps in one. One pump controls the flow of blood from the heart to the lungs where carbon dioxide waste is exchanged for fresh oxygen. The other pump sends the blood to cells through out the body.

2. Heart disease is one of the biggest causes of death.

3. It takes about one minute for a drop of blood to travel from the heart down to your toes and back again.

4. The heart pumps around five litres of blood a minute during rest periods and up to 33 litres per minute during exercise.

5. If you have a family history of heart disease, your chances of suffering a heart attack are increased.

6. Some factors such as smoking, excess weight, diabetes, high blood pressure, sedentary lifestyle, high blood fats, and excessive stress also make a person susceptible to heart attacks.

7. The heart muscle needs to be strong to pump blood around the body efficiently, which is why it’s necessary to exercise.

8. Common symptoms of a heart attack include sudden severe chest pain that may spread to the arm, neck, shoulder or lower jaw; nausea, changed or erratic pulse, pale or bluish skin, sudden perspiration, shortness of breath and a feeling of heaviness or a squeezing pressure around the chest.

9. If you suspect someone is having a heart attack call emergency services (911 in the US – 111 in New Zealand). Make the person comfortable and keep their activity to a minimum. Stay with the person and be prepared to do CPR if necessary.

10. A Dutch study found that eating fish on a regular basis (2 – 3 servings per week) cuts the chances of fatal heart disease in half. The French claim drinking red wine fights heart disease because of the high level of flavonoids.

11. It’s said garlic can not only deter artery clogging but may even heal destroyed arteries.

12. Reduce your risk of heart disease by quitting smoking, exercising regularly, keeping weight within normal limits, maintaining a low-fat diet, learning how to deal with stress effectively and keeping a check on blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels. Finally, enjoy a balanced lifestyle.

13. Purchase one or more of the 28 stories in the 28 Days of Heart series from All Romance eBooks. There are a variety of genres available including contemporary, historical, paranormal and gay romances.

Wild Child My story is called Wild Child.

Here’s the blurb:

Seize the day…

Zoë Underwood loved Matt Cantrell from the moment her mother married his father. She definitely thinks of him as more than a big brother and even though he moved away from home the moment their parents got married, her feelings for him have grown stronger, bigger. More. No one presses her buttons like the tall, dark and gorgeous Matt. If only he can get over the eight-year age difference.

Now, Zoë is determined to snare her man. She wants one thing—Matt’s love. It’s time for her to make a move, stir things up a little and take a chance on love.

Purchase Wild Child by Shelley Munro

My husband is on medication to control both his blood pressure and cholesterol and we try to live a fairly healthy lifestyle. Red wine is strictly medicinal :grin:

Do you have a history of heart disease in your family?

Visit the Thursday Thirteen Hub.


  1. Heather

    Great informative post, Shelley!

  2. Mary

    Great information. I’ve been pretty lucky so far. None of my family have had problems with their hearts. The thing my family has to look out for is cancer. Everyone in my family with the exception of me and my brother have had some sort of cancer.

  3. Brenda ND

    Interesting information about the heart. It’s so important to take care of yourself. Happy TT!

  4. Nessa

    I love garlic.

    111 makes more sense as an emergency number.

    T13 – “A”

  5. Adelle Laudan

    Heart disease is serious stuff. My father had several pace makers. I’ve quit smoking, now to get rid of the extra weight since I did.
    Happy T13!

  6. Jaime

    As always, love the 13. Great info here, Shelley! ;)

  7. Amy Ruttan

    Yep we have heart disease. My Dad’s eldest brother died from a hear attack. He had several heart attacks. About 5 over the years, the 5th being the fatal one. He was a very tense person, wasn’t overweight, he just had high blood pressure. Couldn’t let things go.

    My mother’s brother had a heart attack, but he’s not so lean. LOL! Thankfully he hasn’t had another one.

    I also know a little boy born with an enlarged heart, the procedures he goes through … heartbreaking and he’s the most happiest kid in the world.

  8. MsMenozzi

    Very informative – and important stuff for men and women alike to know.

    My stepfather died last year, just six years after having had an emergency quadruple bypass. My uncle had a triple bypass a month before that, but seems to be doing well, so far.

    Both of them, prior to their heart attacks, were big guys who smoked. I just wish they’d paid more attention before such drastic events had occurred. I like to think my stepdad would have been around longer, too.

    The worst thing of all was that such illness is so easily preventable, but then again, there’s no guarantee, is there?

  9. Elise Logan

    My mom has serious heart disease – she has an implanted defibrillator.

    Fish is good – just watch mercury levels. And prepare it with garlic. and serve it with wine?

  10. Shelley Munro

    Amy – that’s rough for your little boy. I was born with a heart murmur. In my case it’s fairly mild, and although I had to have doctor/hospital visits when I was younger, it hasn’t stopped me doing anything or slowed me down. I’m very lucky.

  11. Shelley Munro

    Ms Menozzi – I guess we’re more aware these days of the things that cause heart disease. The older generations didn’t have the same knowledge as us.

    Elise – we’re pretty lucky down here in NZ with our fish. We don’t have mercury problems. I eat a lot of salmon.

  12. Grandma

    That’s good information. Here’s a bit more. Many women experience heart attacks without any of the classic symptoms listed in #8.

    My T13: Regrets

  13. Shelley Munro

    Grandma – I didn’t know that. It means that we should definitely monitor our health and try to do the right thing.

  14. Anthony North

    Some great advice and an informative post.

  15. Beth

    I like this post. It has some great advise in it. Thank God heart problems are one of the few things that no family members have had.

  16. Inez Kelley

    Excellent information!

  17. Maria

    Good information. Important to know too.

  18. Tatiana Caldwell

    I don’t have a history of heart disease on my side of the family, but my husband does. It stays on his mind lately because his mother recently passed away due to heart disease.

    #10 we knew about, we’re working on #12, but #11 is new to me. And it’s always good to be reminded about #8.

    Good info, thanks for sharing!

  19. Sasha Devlin

    I always learn something on our Thursday 13s. Thanks for the info!

  20. Julia Smith

    Wonderful Thursday Thirteen, Shelley! I love your group effort to promote heart health. *applause*

    My grandfather had heart disease and had a triple bypass. It gave him an extra fifteen years. His siblings also struggled with it.

    So far his children aren’t showing the same symptoms. But that generation has enjoyed a healthier lifestyle and has been better informed about heart disease.

  21. Shelley Munro

    Julia – thanks. I think it’s a great cause.

    Our advances in health care have made a big difference, I think. We’re all far more aware of potential health problems.

  22. Gwen

    Good on you for participating in this, Shelley. Heart disease is also the leading cause of death for American women, so it’s fabulous you’re putting this out there.

    I think I’ll for a nice long walk, then come back and enjoy a glass of red wine while I de-stress in a hot bath. :razz:

  23. Alice Audrey

    That’s a lot of good information, Shelley. Some of it might come in handing for writing some day.

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