Your heart’s health plays an important part in your well-being and quality of life to take steps to keep your heart healthy so it remain strong throughout your life. Healthy habits are key to keeping your heart healthy and reducing cardiovascular problems overall. eight healthy habits help your heart health.
1. Exercise Regularly
Aim for a minimum of ten minutes of moderate physical activity a day. If you can do more, then go right ahead, as long as know your limits. Ten minutes is perfect if you are just starting out in order to avoid injuries. Increase the amount of time as you gain strength.
2. Eat Fruits and Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are packed with nutrients that are vital for your heart’s health. If you are not a big fan of them, then try out different kinds, or prepare them different ways to make them more enjoyable. a variety of both raw and lightly cooked vegetables, but make sure you limit the amount of added salt.
3. Maintain Cholesterol
Have your HDL and LDL cholesterol checked and follow your doctor’s recommendations on how to keep your HDL (good cholesterol) levels high and balanced well against your LDL (bad cholesterol).
Cholesterol problems lead to hardening of the arteries, which is a potential precursor to strokes and heart attacks. If diet and exercise don’t help control your cholesterol, then you may also need medication.
4. Reduce Sugar and Saturated Fats
Sugar and saturated fats not only affect your weight and overall health, they are notoriously bad for your cardiovascular system. Both of these substances contribute to plaque on your arteries that could cause poor circulation and even a stroke if the plaque gets bad enough to completely clog your arteries.
5. Keep a Healthy Weight
A healthy body weight puts much less strain on your heart overall and promotes good health and well-being. Obesity raises risk for high blood pressure and diabetes, both of which can contribute to strokes and heart attacks.
6. Sleep Well
Poor sleep quality contributes to stress and exhaustion, both of which are not good for your heart. You should aim for about eight hours a day, or at least long enough so that you have a well-rested feeling in the morning. If you snore, see your doctor because that could be a sign of sleep apnea, which is another risk factor for heart disease.
7. Quit Smoking
Smoking causes a large number of health problems, especially for the cardiovascular system. Smoking causes your blood vessels to constrict and, when combined with plaque buildup from a poor diet, cause complete arterial blockages. Not only does this put you at risk for a stroke but also gangrene in your extremities. If you don’t smoke, then avoid secondhand smoke as much as possible.
8. See Your Doctor
Make sure you have your heart checked regularly, especially if you are middle-aged or older. Heart screening usually involves a blood pressure check as well as glucose and cholesterol checks. Your doctor may also listen for abnormal murmurs and heart rhythms.
If you keep your heart and cardiovascular system healthy, then the rest of your body will also benefit. See your doctor if you want to start a new exercise regimen or diet or if you currently have chronic health problems. You may also need a doctor’s help if you are trying to quit smoking after several years of tobacco use.
Stellis Health is an independent practice with medical professionals who can screen your heart and help you develop good heart health habits. Contact one of our three convenient locations for an appointment whether you have a heart-related question, or other health issue.