To begin taking charge of your own health, there are 5 crucial numbers Dr. Oz wants you to know. Make knowing them your mantra, and you’ll be on the road to a healthier, longer life.
1. Blood Pressure
Over 50 million American adults have high blood pressure, also called hypertension; within this range,1 out of every 3 isn’t even aware they have this serious medical condition. High blood pressure can cause a host medical problems including cardiovascular disease, chronic kidney disease and stroke, which can strike suddenly.
- Your blood pressure can be tested in several places like your doctor’s office or at a pharmacy. Learn how to test your own blood pressure and invest in a device you can use at home.
- Get in the habit of testing your blood pressure once a month. Make sure each time to test it at the same point in the day, when you’re most relaxed. For accuracy, take 3 readings and figure out the average number between them.
- Pay attention to the top number – the systolic pressure, which indicates the pressure when the heart beats while pumping blood – the best lifelong measurement for hypertension. A systolic reading above 140 is considered too high and warrants seeing your doctor.
2. Waist Size
If you’re sporting a large waistline, your risk of dying prematurely is nearly double. The reason is because belly fat, often fondly referred to as a spare tire or a beer gut – sends out a toxic stream of chemicals impacting the whole body.
- Take your waist size once each month with a measuring tape.
- Measure at your natural waistline, which is above your hipbone and below the ribcage – not where your belt lies or around your hips. Be mindful of your posture and suck in your stomach since the fat you’re measuring is deep inside the belly.
- A waist size over 35 inches in women and over 40 inches in men greatly increases the risk of chronic diseases like diabetes, heart disease and more.
- The ideal waist size for women is 32 ½ inches and 35 inches for men. Click here to learn your body mass index, or BMI, to see how your waist size can impact your overall health.