4 Great Ways To Maintain A Healthy Heart
Heart disease is the leading killer disease all over the world and a majority of people are not even aware of their heart’s condition. The reason behind this is that a lot of people lead inactive and unhealthy lifestyles which eventually take its toll on the heart. It is important to note that some heart conditions are hereditary but there are those that are preventable. If you feel some pressure behind the sternum, it is important to immediately dial 911 because this is a major heart attack symptom.
In some cases, the symptoms may also be confusion, sweating, nausea and dizziness. These symptoms are usually a sign for what is commonly known as silent heart attacks and are common in diabetics and older people. Whether you are recovering from a heart condition or not, it is wise to make sure that you take care of your heart. Simple changes can have a significant effect and can even make the difference between life and death. Some useful tips to help you take care of your heart are:
- 1. Exercise
The heart is an organ as well as a muscle and it needs regular exercise to remain healthy and function properly. Aerobic or cardio exercise like cycling, swimming, jogging and running, should be included in the exercises program. To get real progress, you should exercise at least 2 or 3 times in a week and consistency will ensure that your heart is stronger. You do not have to join a gym to be in position to exercise and you can start with simple steps. For instance, take about 20 minutes walk every day and you can step up your exercise with time.
Although exercise is important, you should avoid overdoing it because it can work against you. In fact, for those already suffering from a heart condition, you should consult your doctor before you embark on any exercise regimen. Hard workouts should be supervised by a fitness instructor to make sure that everything is done the right way.
- 2. Diet
You should include whole grains, vegetables and fresh fruits in your diet as a way to boost energy levels and increase immunity against diseases. Saturated fats should be reduced and monitored because they raise cholesterol levels in the blood. Also, fish and white meat should be more than the amount of red meat that you consume. A diet that is high in cholesterol and fats should be avoided because it has a very negative effect on the arteries and the heart. This kind of diet clogs your arteries and causes plague in your heart which makes it hard for the heart to pump blood.
- 3. Weight
A healthy weight is important because it will not only reduce your risks for heart diseases but at the same time reduce your risk for diabetes and high blood pressure. You can find out what your ideal weight is by getting a body mass index test. When it comes to weight issues, exercise and diet are important factors to consider and if you are already doing them, then maintaining the right weight should not be a problem. Losing weight is a great challenge but even so maintaining the weight is even a great challenge. Once you manage to keep the weight off, you will have more self esteem and confidence which is probably all the motivation you need.
- Stop smoking
Studies have shown that smoking cigarettes puts you at risk of chronic diseases and it is known to also cause coronary heart disease. However, you should note that there are other factors like high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, diabetes and obesity that are independent risk factors of coronary heart disease. Smoking significantly increases your risk whether you are a smoker or are exposed to second hand smoke.
Women, who are on oral contraceptives and are smoking, are at a high risk of coronary heart diseases than those who do not. Smoking is also known to reduce HDL, which is considered as good cholesterol which also increases your risk. Therefore, if you are looking for a way to keep your heart and overall health in good condition, then you should kick the habit. You should consult your doctor on safe smoking cessation methods especially if you are looking for ways to quit smoking because they might recommend e cigarettes and other solutions to this problem.
Chad is a freelance writer who has contributed a lot of articles on healthy living and has highlighted a lot of effects of smoking on the overall health. He is now researching on electronic cigarettes and their effectiveness to quit smoking.