Great Health Tip of the Day: Know Your History

May 2, 2012

Having a family member with a disease or health condition such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure, or high cholesterol increases your risk for developing those conditions.  Knowing your family’s health history and sharing this information with your doctor is an important step in developing a plan to help reduce your risk.  Following are some tips on gathering a family health history:

  • Speak with your parents, siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins (family reunions are a great place to gather information!); explain what you are doing and why
  • Find out what health conditions that they have or had in the past
  • How old were they when the condition first occurred?
  • For deceased relatives, find out age at death and cause of death; did they have any other health conditions?
  • What are/were their lifestyle habits (e.g. eating habits, physical activity level, tobacco use)

Record and share this information with your family members, and make sure to keep the information together for future generations.

Source:  CDC web site