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Encouraging Kids To Think About Heart Health

March 5, 2010, 5:07 PM by Cherlene Richards

Encouraging Kids To Think About Heart Health
SIOUX FALLS, SD - It's never too early to start thinking about your heart health. Even elementary-aged children can develop positive habits now that could make a difference when they grow up. And that’s why doctors are targeting kids.

Dozens of students at Lowell Elementary in Sioux Falls received a special visit by a medical professional, complete with props.

Cardiologist Dr. Tom Stys from Sanford Hospital showed dozens of kids how the heart muscle works. Stys says the heart beats around 60 times a minute, and it runs for almost 100 years. But what's also important for children to know is that if they don't take care of their hearts and stay healthy, they could develop heart disease in their adult years.

"We will actually make the biggest impact on cardiovascular disease picture in the future, next 40, 50, 60 years.  We think these days that 80 percent of heart disease is preventable,“ Dr. Tom Stys with Sanford Health said.

Dr. Stys says children should get used to eating healthy and exercising now. That means they need to get in the habit of choosing fresh fruits and veggies, and also getting off the couch and getting exercise outside.

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