A healthy change in a lifestyle is a big part of dealing with heart disease or attempting to avoid it. A rise in BP or cholesterol will bring you a lesson on improvement in your healthy lifestyle. However, some people quickly modify their workout schedule, their bad habits, and diet. But there are some people who do efforts to make improvements but fail to succeed in it. So, rather than performing a major makeover, you can start with a series of small improvements to improve your heart’s health. And once you get started, you will come to believe that making adjustments in the lifestyle is not that difficult. To help you keep it all straight, here in this post, I am going to share a few tips that help you to keep your heart healthy.
- Avoid smoking: Smoking not only harms your lungs but also your heart. According to research, smoking is the primary cause of coronary disease which leads to heart attack and also it doubles the chances of heart disease. From where you can estimate how bad smoking is for your heart and health? Even if you are smoking for years, the harm is not too late to undo. So, if you quit smoking, then within 20 minutes your heart rate and BP will drop to the normal rate. Your body begins to recover as time passes. The chance of stroke after not smoking for five years is the same as that of someone who never smoked. So, better health is right outside the door.
- Reduce salt consumption: If you have a high salt diet, your blood pressure will be high, which means your risk of heart disease or stroke increases. The average consumption of salt recommended for an adult is 6gm and for children, it is 3gm try to reduce the intake of salt in your food. Besides, watch over the food labels to see how much salt you consume in packed food items. Intake of food with more 1.5gm or 0.6 of sodium per 100 gm is high, so try to avoid wherever possible.
- Maintain weight: Excessive weight is evil for your heart, carrying with it a lot of heart risk. Being over-weight can ruin your heart by raising your BP and cholesterol, making it harder for your heart to pump blood across the body and builds fat in your arteries. So, if you are over-weight then try to lose your weight by exercising regularly and maintaining a healthy diet. Eating less sugar and saturated fats and moving on to more fruits and vegetables can also help you reduce those extra pounds in the long run.
- Alleviate stress: It is common in people around the world that when they are under a lot of stress they start moving towards bad habits. Some people start getting dragged towards alcohol, smoking, and take little to no exercise. It is important to note that when we have stressed our body releases hormones called adrenaline and cortisol which lets our heartbeat quickly, reducing our blood vessel to brace our body to fight against the stress. Our body gets relaxed and heals after coping with the stressor. However, if you are constantly stressed then your body will not get the chance to heal, resulting in damaging your artery walls and increasing your BP, which is not good for your heart health. A tip to fight stress is to try yoga as it will help you relieve the stress. Studies have shown that yoga has the ability to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.
- Exercise: Exercising regularly helps you not only maintain the weight but also help you control stress and keep your heart strong. Following an unhealthy lifestyle will increase the chances of heart disease by twice. Exercising will help you control chronic illness and reduces the risk of stroke as mentioned above. Just opting to take the stairs instead of life can have a positive effect on your heart. Besides, having a 30-minute walk after lunch for a week can also do wonders for you.
- Healthy diet: An intake of fruits and vegetables is important because they are low in calories and high in fibers and is an essential part of a balanced heart diet. Increase the consumption of potassium in your diet by eating at least 5 portions of fruits and veggies a day. The nutrients present in fruits and vegetables include vitamins, minerals, and fibers that can keep our heart healthy. Foods with antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids, and potassium are full of nutrients and help you give your heartbeat a boost.
- Get enough sleep: Having enough sleep is essential for your healthy heart. Not having enough sleep regardless of your age and health habits will let you at a higher risk of heart disease. The study concludes that sleeping less disturbs fundamental health and biological processes, including BP and stress. So, make sleep your priority and sleep at least 7-8 hours.
- Avoid sitting too much time: Studies have shown in recent years that sitting too much at a time, is bad for your health regardless of how much work out you do. Apart from this, sitting too much also increases the risk of cardiovascular events. And this is something bad for the people doing seated jobs. Besides, sitting too long increases the risk of blood clots. So, it is recommended to do a short walk every day to keep your heart and body healthy.
- Eat healthy fats and say no to trans-fat: No doubt fat is important in our diet but fats like saturated, unsaturated, and polyunsaturated, no trans-fat. Trans-fat is believed to raise the risk of getting a heart disease or having a chronic stroke. And this is because of trans-fat blocks your arteries by increasing your poor cholesterol level and lowering your healthy cholesterol level. Saying no to them in your diet, you’re improving blood flow through your entire blood.
- Say no to alcohol: Consumption of alcohol affects your heart as it causes high BP, irregular heartbeat, and harm heart muscles. However, it doesn’t mean it completely; a moderate intake can also help you increase good cholesterol. Not only this, but it also helps stop blood clot formation and damage to arteries. Remember that we are not saying consume it after every meal, just stick on the guidelines.
Conclusion: Follow these above guidelines and do your heart a favor. A healthy heart diet forms the basis for combating heart disease. Eating well not only helps you keep your blood pressure and cholesterol stable but also helps you decrease the level of diabetes and over-weight. Also, have a timely heart check-up at the best hospital near you.