For Valentine's Day, consider sending yourself a gift of the heart — heart-health, to be specific. USF Health, in partnership with the American College of Cardiology, is offering free cardiovascular health screenings today from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at two locations: USF Health Morsani Center, 13330 USF Laurel Drive, Tampa; and USF Health South Tampa Center, 2 Tampa General Circle. Tests for glucose (nonfasting), cholesterol and blood pressure, as well as BMI and waist circumference measurements will be performed, and there also will be nurses and physicians available to answer questions. The service is free, though you might have to pay for parking.
Can't make it to the USF screenings? Lots of pharmacies will check your blood pressure for free. And all you need is a tape measure to check your waist size, a powerful predictor of heart health, says the National Institutes of Health. For men, the danger zone is a waist over 40 inches; for women, it's 35 inches. Stand and place a tape measure around your middle, just above your hipbones, advises NIH. Measure your waist just after you breathe out.