Free health screening at Mediclinic during Heart and Stroke Awareness Month

Posted on 1 September 2016

In support of Heart and Stroke Awareness Month this September, Mediclinic is offering free screenings at their hospitals and encouraging patients to get a little more active.

Our jobs are getting busier and our lifestyles more sedentary. The prevalence of technology makes round-the-clock work possible and leaves virtually no room for downtime. That’s why regular physical activity is more essential than ever and yet we seem to be getting less of it. That’s why the Mediclinic Heart and Stroke Awareness campaign is highlighting exercise as one of the most crucial factors in heart health and the prevention of stroke and other cardiovascular diseases.


Move in the right direction

Don’t think that you have to go from unfit to fitness fanatic overnight. Research has shown that 30 minutes of exercise a few times a week is enough to keep your heart healthy and lower your risk of heart disease and stroke. You can walk the dog, do a bit of gardening, wash the car, dance, jog or play with your kids – all of these activities will be moving you in the right direction. Going to the gym is not a prerequisite.

Take the #Mediclinic30mins30days pledge – to exercise for 30 minutes a day four times a week enjoying an activity of your choice – and you could boost your heart health and be in line to win a Fitbit activity tracker. Take the pledge on Mediclinic’s Facebook page or the Mediclinic SA Twitter page.Heart-and-stroke-campaign
Lower your risk

Dr Franco Erasmus, clinical manager at Mediclinic Bloemfontein, says risk factors for heart conditions can be divided into two categories:

1 Modifiable: high blood pressure, smoking, diabetes, high cholesterol and a sedentary lifestyle.
2 Non-modifiable: age, gender (women are at a slightly higher risk than men) and a family history of cardiovascular or cerebrovascular disease.

What we can do to help ourselves

Besides 30 minutes of moderate exercise a few times a week, Dr Erasmus suggests these preventative measures to limit your risk of heart disease and stroke:

• Eat five servings of fruit and vegetables a day.
• Limit your salt and sugar intake.
• Limit bad fats and increase good fats in your diet.
• Don’t do strenuous endurance sports for more than three hours a week.
• At least once a year, have your blood pressure, blood lipid level (fats), blood glucose level (sugar) and heart rhythm checked.

Free screenings

As part of their Heart and Stroke Awareness Campaign, Mediclinic hospitals are encouraging the public to understand more about their health by offering free screenings for heart disease and stroke. ‘The free screenings involve a blood pressure, blood glucose and cholesterol check,’ Dr Erasmus explains.

‘By knowing your risk factors you can manage them – either with medication or lifestyle changes. This could help lower your risk of developing a cardiovascular issue like a heart attack or a cerebrovascular problem like a stroke, by up to 80%.’

Published in Cardiology

In the interest of our patients, in accordance with SA law and our commitment to expertise, Mediclinic cannot subscribe to the practice of online diagnosis. Please consult a medical professional for specific medical advice. If you have any major concerns, please see your doctor for an assessment. If you have any cause for concern, your GP will be able to direct you to the appropriate specialists.