From chocolates to festive decor, you can’t go anywhere during the month of February without seeing hearts. But just because you can’t see your heart as easily as the Hallmark cards lining the stores right now, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t deserve some much-needed attention. It’s the only one you have, and we at Appalachian Regional Healthcare System want yours ticking for a very long time.

In celebration of Heart Health Awareness month, here are three easy ways to make sure your heart is getting the love it deserves:


Eat a Healthy Diet

21-Day Sodium Challenge

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Give your body the fuel it craves most. According to the CDC, increasing your intake of fresh fruits and vegetables while limiting the amount of sodium and processed or fried foods can help you avoid heart disease.

Need inspiration to kick start a love of heart-healthy foods? The Paul H. Broyhill Wellness Center offers nutritional cooking classes to its members for $10 a class. Enjoy a hands-on experience learning to prepare delicious food combinations that are sure to give your heart the boost it needs. Taught by the Wellness Center’s on-staff nutritionist, Heather Casey, the classes focus on practical recipes that “can be incorporated into a busy lifestyle.”



Engage in Regular Physical Activity

February is American Heart Month

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We all know we need to exercise to maintain a healthy weight and functioning body, but how much actually makes a difference?  The Surgeon General recommends that adults engage in moderate-intensity exercise for at least 2 hours and 30 minutes a week. This could be as simple as a brisk walk or bike ride on the Greenway once the weather finally thaws or signing up for a water aerobics class or personal training at The Paul H. Broyhill Wellness Center.

Apprehensive to join a gym and don’t know where to start? Our Thrive program offers supervised training and instruction for participants to achieve their personal health goals. There are currently three tracks that are tailored to your needs: weight loss, cardiopulmonary, and oncology.

Click here to find out more and download the referral form for your healthcare provider.


Listen to Your Heart

Am I having a heart attack

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While living a healthy lifestyle is integral in maintaining a functional and thriving heart, it’s also important to be active about what your body is telling you. Know the signs of a heart attack and be proactive about seeking help when you know you feel “off.” According to, signs to look for include discomfort in the center of your chest that lasts more than a few minutes or goes away and comes back. The sensation can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness, or pain.

Appalachian Regional Healthcare System is here to ensure you have the best resources available for your heart-health needs. From prevention to intervention, our state-of-the-art facilities and services are available, and the Cardiology Center now offers same-day appointments for those experiencing sudden onset symptoms with our new cardiologist, George M. Hanna Jr., MD, FACC.

If you are experiencing cardiac symptoms, call (828) 264-9664 to schedule an appointment.