One of the best ways to keep a healthy heart is to avoid unnecessary stress. Research shows that stress contributes to heart attacks, raising blood pressure and causing a higher heart rate. These factors compound over time and can create a cycle of stress and bad health. To keep stress levels to a minimum, practice deep breathing exercises, yoga, or meditation. Alternatively, enroll in a stress-relief class. These techniques have many benefits, including improving your heart health and quality of life.
Regularly check your blood pressure and sugar levels. High blood pressure can damage the heart, even if you do not have any symptoms. If you suspect that you are at risk, talk to your health worker to plan lifestyle changes. If you have a chronic disease, you should also set targets and take your medicines regularly.
Eating a balanced diet can help reduce the risk of heart disease. Eating a variety of fruits and vegetables is a great way to make this happen. Also, limiting your meat intake is important. Choose poultry or fish instead of red meat. Also, remember to drink plenty of water. You can also take dietary supplements that can improve your cholesterol and reduce inflammation.
Eating more wholegrain foods, which are lower in fat, is another good way to keep your heart healthy. This type of food is also less processed, so you will feel full for longer. Also, try to include more oily fish into your diet, as these contain omega-3 fatty acids that improve cholesterol levels. You can also get omega-3 fats by consuming spinach, walnuts, flaxseeds, soya, and pumpkin seeds.
Avoiding cigarette smoke is another good way to keep a healthy heart. Cigarette smoke contains chemicals that promote the buildup of plaque in the arteries. Secondhand smoke can also contribute to heart problems. It can also affect your blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Besides, you should exercise to maintain a healthy heart.
Taking regular walks can help you clear your head and reduce stress. A five-minute walk can make a big difference. You can also take a half-hour walk to get your blood pumping. Increasing your physical activity through strength training and aerobic exercises is also an important way to maintain heart health. By increasing your muscle mass, you’ll burn more calories and lower your blood pressure.
Getting enough sleep is also important. Research has shown that people who don’t get enough sleep have a greater risk of developing cardiovascular disease. In a study of more than 3,000 adults, those who slept less than six hours per night were two times more likely to experience a heart attack or stroke. This is because inadequate sleep disrupts the body’s biological processes and causes it to increase blood pressure and inflammation.
Another great way to protect your heart is by quitting smoking. Cigarette smoke increases your risk of heart disease, putting you at risk for heart attack and stroke. Also, smoking damages your lungs. Quitting tobacco is the single biggest change you can make to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.