A Quick Look at How to Maintain a Healthy Heart

Over 600,000 Americans die from heart disease each year. It’s the leading killer of both women and men, with a heart attack occurring somewhere on average of every 40 seconds. With that kind of mortality, many people look toward lifestyles that promote heart-healthy living. While advances in medicine can help in many circumstances, the best guard against heart trouble is avoiding it from the start.

Today we examine changes you can make to help keep your heart healthy and happy. Even if you’re already diagnosed with a heart condition, these lifestyle elements promote the best conditions to extend your years with good cardiovascular health.

If you smoke, stop

The dangers of smoking are well-known and extensive. Tobacco use prematurely ages your blood vessels and heart, bringing on atherosclerosis early for many patients. Smoking also affects blood flow throughout your body, interfering with your body’s own regenerative systems.

Find your ideal weight

Carrying extra pounds makes your heart work harder, increasing your risk of high blood pressure and cardiac irregularities. Dropping extra pounds and maintaining a healthy weight reduces the burden on your cardiovascular system.

Manage “the big three”

Hypertension, high cholesterol, and diabetes represent challenges to your heart health that are often interrelated. Having one condition raises your risk of developing the other two, and any of these three elevate your chances of developing heart problems. Each of these conditions is manageable through lifestyle changes and medical treatment.

Adopt a heart-friendly diet

There are food choices that will help keep your heart healthy. The good news is that a heart-friendly diet isn’t restricted to a few bland and uninteresting foods. You can enjoy a wide range of fresh and wholesome options. Reducing your intake of refined carbohydrates and choosing healthy fats may assist your weight management efforts and help control “bad” cholesterol levels, while limiting salt intake helps some people control their high blood pressure.

Boost activity levels

Even moderate increases in physical activity can produce remarkable improvements in your overall wellness and improve your heart health. There’s no need to become a gym fanatic though. In fact, 30 minutes of walking five days a week is enough to start a heart-healthy activity plan. Adding modest weight training usually offers even more benefits.

Control the effects of stress

There’s no way to completely bypass stress, and some types are even healthy for you. However, worry and depression can contribute to the risk of heart disease, so it’s important to consider your mental well-being as part of your overall health. Increased activity usually improves your outlook, as do healthy eating habits. For many people, finding a work/life balance frees up time and helps you lessen stress to help maintain your heart’s integrity.

Dr. Shahbandar and his team here at Shahbandar Heart Clinic are your partners in managing your heart health. Call one of our offices located in Romeo or Rochester Hills, Michigan to make an appointment. Or click the button to schedule an assessment of your heart’s current condition.

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