Approximately one in every four deaths is a result of heart disease. According to cardiologists, here are some effective ways to enhance your heart health:
1. Enliven your diet.
One of the major contributory factors towards coronary heart disease is an unhealthy diet. Processed meat and carbohydrates along with food sources rich in saturated fatty acids can lead to higher triglyceride levels in the blood. This can also spike up cholesterol levels in the body, causing fat deposition in arteries. Replace red meat with legumes, nuts and beans as a source of protein. Cardiologists advise individuals to obtain healthier unsaturated fats from plant sources. Eating more fruits, vegetables, and food vitamin-rich foods not only lowers LDL cholesterol levels but also prevents heart disease in the long run. Cut down on salt as well, as this can lead to hypertension.
Consider watching this video to know more about 5 ways to improve your heart heath….
2. Exercise regularly.
Staying physically active benefits the heart in multiple ways. Aerobic exercises, such as jogging and cycling, help burn excessive calories in the body, preventing obesity which has been greatly linked to cardiovascular disorders. Moreover, exercise also helps improve blood circulation around the body, which enhances the cardiac muscle’s function. Individuals who stay physically active are reported to have better blood pressure and blood glucose regulation, preventing heart problems in the future. Exercise also promotes positive psychological changes, such as causing increased arterial dilatation, which reduces the risk of heart attack or abnormal cardiac rhythms. At least thirty minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise is recommended every day.
3. Quit smoking.
Several studies reveal that hazardous chemical substances in cigarette smoke, such as nicotine and tar, lead to tachycardia, irregular heart rhythms and damage the inner lining of blood vessels. Tobacco present in smoke, pipe and cigar is particularly harmful for the cardiac muscle. With an increased blood pressure caused due to smoking, the heart muscle has to work harder and faster, which increases the risk of cardiac failure. Smoking also reduces the amount of oxygen being carried by the blood and makes blood clot more easily, leading to stroke and sudden cardiac arrest. Research suggests that quitting smoking reduces the risk of heart disease by 50%.
4. Stress management.
The cardiovascular consequences of chronic stress can be quite detrimental. In response to psychological stress, cortisol levels increase in the body. The hormone cortisol causes an abnormal arterial stenosis whereas another stress hormone, epinephrine increases heart rate rapidly, both of which adds excessive strain on the heart muscle. Moreover, long periods of stress spike up the blood pressure as well. Overtime, these risk factors pave the way for plaque buildup in arteries, leading to angina and coronary heart disease. Studies suggest that stress also triggers inflammatory reactions in blood vessels. Managing your stress can prevent these risk factors. Mindful meditation, yoga and self-relaxation can help reduce stress buildup.
5. Limit alcohol consumption.
Studies have found out that heavy drinkers experience more irregularity in heartbeat, leading to greater tachycardia episodes. Overconsumption of alcohol also results in long-term hypertension, which further causes thickening of arterial walls and weakened heart muscle, both of which are major risk factors for heart attack and stroke. Alcoholic beverages are also known to cause arterial fibrillation, during which the upper heart chambers quiver abnormally. This negatively impacts the normal blood flow around the body and can also cause blood clots in the heart chambers. The American Heart association recommends no more than one drink per day for both men and women.
It is crucial to follow these steps today to ensure this miraculous, life-sustaining organ continues to thrive tomorrow.
Until Next Time,
Team Doctor ASKY!