4 numbers doctors say you need to know to track your heart’s health

How many people know their numbers? It’s not just knowing your height and weight. There’s a set of numbers that can tell you a lot about your health.

“It’s really important for patients and for people in general to know their numbers because that’s what’s really let’s them know what their baseline cardiovascular risk is,” said Dr. Jyoti Sharma, a cardiologist.

Let’s start with blood pressure, or the force of blood in your arteries as your heart beats.

“An ideal blood pressure would be something around 120 over 80,” Sharma said. “However, there are recent guidelines that say some patients it might be reasonable for them to have blood pressures between 130 to 140 over 80 to 89.”

“The second number to know is your body mass index, and that’s a number that can be calculated based on your height and your weight,” she said.

The third set of numbers you need to know is your blood glucose level or the amount of sugar in your blood stream.

“That number can let you know if you have diabetes or if your at risk of developing diabetes,” Sharma said.

And finally cholesterol.

“When you get your cholesterol checked at the doctors office, you’re gonna see four numbers that come back,” Sharma said. “The first number would be your total cholesterol. Ideally, that should be less than 200.”

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