How much you move and what you eat can have a big impact on your heart. Many things can increase your risk for heart disease and heart attack. The good news is that most cases of cardiovascular disease are preventable.
Leading a healthy lifestyle can help keep your blood sugar levels, cholesterol and blood pressure normal. All of these things lower the risk for heart disease. Read on to find out more details on the 7 habits that can help prevent or treat heart disease. Check out 310 shake vs 18 shake.
- Choose Healthy Foods and Drinks
Eating lots of food high in trans fats and saturated fats may lead to heart problems. Eating healthy foods and snacks, on the other hand, can help prevent heart disease. Make sure you eat plenty of fresh vegetables and fruits and less processed foods.
Eating a heart-healthy diet is a behavioral habit of conscious choosing. It’s not about focusing on a particular type of food or nutrient but rather on what you eat daily, weekly and even months.
Eat fiber-rich foods that are less in trans fats and saturated fats to help reduce cholesterol. Eat less sugar to lower your blood sugar level and prevent diabetes. Minimizing sodium (salt) intake can help lower blood pressure—use spices and herbs instead of salt.
Excessive consumption of alcohol is attributed to an increase in blood pressure. It’s suggested that you shouldn’t drink more than one drink daily.
- Keep Moving
Regular workouts improve almost every aspect of your health and well-being, particularly cardiovascular health. People who are mostly on the move tend to be less exposed to heart disease than those leading a sedentary lifestyle. Even shorter spurts of movement provide heart benefits.
Physical activity enhances the cardiorespiratory system. It strengthens the heart by lowering triglycerides and increasing insulin sensitivity and HDL cholesterol. Exercise also helps you control your weight, reduce blood pressure, inflammation and heart rate.
- Get Enough Sleep
If you don’t sleep enough, you increase your risk of obesity, diabetes and high blood pressure. These three illnesses make you susceptible to heart disease. Most adults need to sleep 7 to 9 hours every night.
Sleep problems, like sleep apnea, cause an individual to stop breathing for a moment during sleep. These types of problems interfere with your ability to get enough rest so if you suffer from sleep apnea or other sleep concerns don’t hesitate to contact your healthcare provider.
Be sure to have good sleeping habits. Set a bedtime and stick to it by waking up and going to bed at the same time every day. Make sure your sleeping room is dark and quiet, so it’s easier to fall asleep.
- Get Screened Regularly
High cholesterol and high blood pressure can damage your blood vessels and heart. Without getting screened for these conditions, you might not even notice you have them. Regular testing can show your health condition and whether you need to take action.
Adults typically go for a cholesterol check at least once every four to six years Cholesterol testing generally starts at age 20. However, professionals recommend earlier screening if you are genetically predisposed to heart disease.
Screening for blood pressure usually starts in childhood. If you’re 18 and above, you should have your blood pressure checked at least once every two years. Starting at age 40, you should be tested annually.
Early screening for diabetes can help considering the condition is a risk factor for heart disease. If you have a family history of diabetes or being overweight/obesity, your doctor may recommend early screening. But if you don’t have risk factors and you have a healthy weight, you should consider starting at age 45 and retest every three years.
- Take Your Medicine
In case of a health condition, your physician may prescribe medications like statins to help control blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar. It’s important that you’re diligent with taking them daily and only switch up your regimen under your doctor’s guide.
Avoid taking aspirin and such medicines unless your doctor advises you to. Taking certain drugs without proper advice could lead to bleeding and more problems. To help understand the symptoms of a heart condition, you need to know how the cardiovascular system works. To understand how your heart works, visit this page.
- Avoid Smoking
Smoking remains a leading cause of disease and preventable death worldwide. Smoking and consumption of tobacco products isn’t just bad for your lungs, it has negative effects on your heart too.
Tobacco products and smoking are some of the most important cardiovascular risk factors. Smokers, in particular, have a high risk of stroke and heart attack compared with nonsmokers. Even if you don’t smoke, make sure to avoid secondhand smoke.
Chemicals in tobacco can damage your blood vessels. Smoking causes gum disease, emphysema, cancer and harms almost every organ in your body. Tobacco smoking also lowers your HDL, increases blood pressure, causes arteriosclerosis, and peripheral artery disease. E-cigarettes are also linked to increased heart problems.
If you’re one of those who use tobacco or smoke (even once a while) then quitting the habit could improve your heart health.
- Get to a Healthy Weight
Carrying extra weight means your heart needs to overwork, which can increase your risk of cardiovascular problems. If you have high blood sugar, high cholesterol or high blood pressure, your risk increases even more.
One way to check if your weight is within the normal range is to calculate your body mass index (BMI). A BMI of 25 or more is considered overweight and is usually associated with an increased risk of heart disease and stroke.
Even a small weight loss can benefit your heart. To help reduce weight and other risk factors, introduce diet modifications, and exercise into your life.
Life Healthier to Avoid the Risk of Heart Disease
You’re never too young or too old to start taking care of your heart. Even small changes in your life changes can add years to your life.
Start reducing your risk of heart disease today by following certain healthy habits, like the ones listed above. For more general health and wellness tips, check out our blog.