Do you want to protect your heart from things like strokes and heart attacks? Here are some proven methods for keeping your heart healthy.
It’s no secret that there’s a health pandemic in America. Though it’s a topic of popular conversation, we’re not talking about COVID-19. We’re talking about heart disease.
Did you know nearly 50% of American adults have some form of cardiovascular disease? This includes things like congenital heart disease, coronary artery disease, myocardial infarction, heart failure, and more.
While some heart conditions can be genetic, many of them are direct results of our lifestyles, which means there’s good news. Most types of heart disease are preventable. Even if you are at a higher risk due to genetics, there are steps you can take to significantly reduce your chances.
We want to help provide guidance. Keep reading for everything you need to know about protecting your heart.
Start Working Out
One of the best things you can do for your overall health is to work out on a regular basis. Working out strengthens your muscles (to include your heart), improves your cardiovascular system, boosts your mood, and can significantly extend your life. The question is, what type of working out should you do?
Resistance training is vital for building lean muscle mass. The more lean muscle mass you have, the more efficient your metabolism will be at burning calories, including fat. The less fat you have, the less at-risk you’ll be for cardiovascular diseases.
However, taking up resistance training doesn’t mean you need to become a bodybuilder or a gym rat. There are several forms of resistance workouts, such as:
- Resistance bands
- Weight lifting
- Bodyweight Training
Find a routine you can enjoy that suits your needs.
While lean muscle mass is important, you must incorporate cardiovascular training into your workouts as well. This includes anything from jogging to riding bikes or doing laps in a pool. The key is to elevate your heart rate and breathing.
Your heart, like any other muscle, needs training to get stronger.
Ditch Unhealthy Habits
There are a lot of ways to correct heart conditions, such as taking heart medications. For example, the benefits of Brilinta can be amazing. However, it’s just as important to prevent heart disease as it is to treat it.
We recommend ditching unhealthy habits that can increase your risk of heart disease, such as drinking alcohol and smoking cigarettes. Although, drinking red wine in moderation can help heart health.
Smoking cigarettes, however, is never good for your heart. The tar and chemicals get stuck in the lining of your arteries, making them sticky. Then, fatty materials are more likely to get clogged, causing potential heart conditions.
Clean Up Your Diet
Speaking of your arteries, we need to talk about how healthy eating can lead to a healthier heart. Over 70% of the U.S. population is overweight or obese. The majority of people in this group are obese.
Being overweight means you have excess body fat. The more body fat you have, the more blood your body has to pump through your heart, making it work harder. Additionally, a diet high in saturated fats and trans fats increase the amount of cholesterol in our blood, which can lead to clogged arteries.
You’ll also want to avoid foods high in added sugars or processed carbohydrates. When we consume simple sugars (candy, sodas, pastries, etc.) our body doesn’t know what to do with all of that immediate energy unencumbered by fiber. It then releases insulin to store that energy for later use (i.e. as fat).
Focus your diet on complex carbs like beans, whole grains, and vegetables. The fiber in these foods slows down the digestion process to prolong the release of the food’s energy. Additionally, foods high in fiber take require more energy to digest, meaning you’ll burn more calories during the process.
Make sure you’re consuming plenty of lean protein, such as fish, poultry, tofu, low-fat yogurt, and more. Finally, remember that not all forms of fat are bad. Healthy fats, like those found in avocados, nuts, seeds, and fish are actually good for preventing heart conditions.
Learn More About Healthy Heart Supplements and Medications
Sometimes, we need health supplements or medications to prevent or treat heart conditions. If you already have heart disease or are at high risk, you may want to ask about your options, such as Brilinta medication.
What is Brilinta?
Brilinta is a medication that helps prevent blood clots. It’s incredibly helpful for patients who’ve undergone heart surgery, such as stent placement. Brilinta and many other heart medications like it can help save lives and prevent serious heart issues.
Try to Be More Active Throughout the Day
We already talked about working out, but picking up a daily workout routine may be difficult for some people. Whether you’re limited by time or physical ability, hitting the gym may not be an option.
While physical exercise should be a priority, there are other things you can do to be more active throughout the day. For example:
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator
- Park farther away at work, the store, etc.
- Take a nightly walk around the block
- Get up and move every 30 minutes at work
- Walk up and down your stairs during commercial breaks while watching TV
Every little bit counts, especially if you lead an otherwise sedentary lifestyle.
Learn How to Live With Less Stress
Finally, learn how to prevent heart conditions by lowering your stress. Stress and anxiety can increase blood pressure. It also increases the amount of cortisol production in your body that raises blood sugar, triglycerides, and more.
Make sure you’re taking time to decompress after work. This can be through your workout, yoga, or any other form of self-care. If you find it relaxing to paint or knit, make sure you set aside time each day.
However, we highly recommend meditating. Meditation teaches us how to relax and let go of internal and external stressors. It can even help you lower blood pressure and reduce other symptoms of anxiety or depression.
Want More Tips On Avoiding Heart Conditions?
If you’ve been diagnosed with or are at risk for heart conditions, we want to help. Be sure to check out some of the other articles on our blog for more advice about how to improve your health and lower your risks of heart disease. We can also grant you access to our multiple pharmaceutical partners who can provide you with affordable medications and supplements.
Contact us today if you have any questions.