We’ve made it to another Workout Wednesday!
For those of you still looking for a kick in the you-know-what to get your muscles in motion, here’s a biggee: Exercise is one of the best ways to combat a problem affecting millions of Americans – high cholesterol.
I guess you could call it a hat trick. For the third time in a week, my two professional worlds collided to bring a well-known spokesperson into my production life as part of a campaign with a focus on healthy living. This time, the spokesperson is actor John O’Hurley, who many of you may recognize from his role as “J. Peterman” on Seinfeld or his moves on “Dancing with the Stars.” He’s also one of the 71 million Americans living with high cholesterol. (Remember my great business trip to Los Angeles last month? I can now tell you it was to work with John on some videos related to this awareness campaign made possible by Kowa Pharmaceuticals America, Inc., Eli Lilly and Company and the National Lipid Association.)
Yesterday, John, joined Dr. Eliot Brinton, a founding board member of the National Lipid Association for a six-hour satellite media tour to discuss the how important it is for patients and doctors to work together to manage a high cholesterol. They also discussed the release of a landmark study called “USAGE: Understanding Statin Use in America and Gaps in Education.” (Statins are the class of prescription drugs used to treat patients with high cholesterol.)
Doctors prescribe more than 200 million prescriptions for statins each year, but the USAGE survey found 75% of statin users stop therapy by the end of the first year – and many don’t talk to their physician before they stop taking their prescriptions. (To learn more about the study, visit www.statinusage.com)
It’s important to note that not everyone who finds out they have high cholesterol has to begin taking a statin immediately. In fact, John talked about how making healthier choices in his diet and starting a regular exercise program which included running and other cardiovascular activities, helped him get his numbers back in a healthy range.
That approach has worked for other people, too. Countless studies show exercise helps lower triglycerides, which at high levels are linked to coronary artery disease. Exercise is also linked to raising HDL levels in the blood, also known as the “good” cholesterol. The good news here is it’s also been shown you don’t have to work out at super high intensities to reap these benefits when it comes to your heart health. Doing a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise – swimming, running, walking, cycling, circuit training, Zumba – five to six days a week will do your heart and body good so you can continue to have fun, be fit and feel fabulous!