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My Story: Abby Vostad

by Pamela M. on Monday, November 11, 2013

Abby Vostad South Dakota

Heart failure and high blood pressure run in my family.  For many years, I used genetics as an excuse to be apathetic about my health and weight.  My paternal Grandmother and I were very close for as long as I can remember. She was a bold woman who meant the world to me.  One day, as a young girl, Grandma and I were baking when suddenly she grabbed her chest and dropped to the ground.  That day is forever a part of my memory - I called for help and Grandma made it to the hospital where she underwent surgery for her first of many pace makers.  The next twenty or so years of her life were filled with cardiologists, surgeries, scares and heart failure.  She always promised me she would not die until I got married and had a baby.  Believe it or not, Grandma meant what she said when she made that promise.  Grandma fought her heart failure until my son was nearly a year old.  After my Grandma passed away, I knew it was in my hands to change the course for my family.  

I decided that I could not use genetics as an excuse - that I could take charge of my health and the future for my family.  I got involved with the American Hearth Association to bring awareness to the number one killer of women and put some my passion behind a great cause.  I also took control of my diet and exercise.  Since then, I have lost over 50 pounds and am well on my way to living a long healthy life.  I eat a heart healthy diet and exercise six days a week.  

March will mark two years since I lost the most important woman in my life and I want nothing more than to make her proud and take a stand against heart disease!  

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