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5 Ways to Put Your Heart Health First

5 Ways to Put Your Heart Health First

Show Your Heart Some Love

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States, with one person dying every 37 seconds from cardiovascular disease. With these shocking statistics, you may be asking yourself what you can do to reduce your risk and boost your heart health. Here’s how.

1. Eat a Heart-Healthy Diet

Like most aspects of your health, the foods you eat can also influence your heart health. Adding the following foods to your diet can help to support cardiovascular health:

  • Leafy greens
  • Whole grains
  • Protein-rich food
  • Fat-free or low-fat dairy products
  • Nuts and Seeds
  • Fruits

It is also recommended that you avoid the following foods:

  • Sodium
  • Fatty cuts of meat
  • Trans fats

2. Get Moving

Getting regular physical activity may lower risk factors for heart disease such as decreasing LDL cholesterol levels, reduce blood pressure, and help you to maintain a healthy body weight.

According to the American Heart Association, it is recommended that adults get 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise each week, or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise each week.

Moderate-intensity exercise may include activities such as:

  • Brisk walking
  • Riding a bicycle
  • Dancing

Vigorous aerobic exercise may include activities such as:

  • Hiking
  • Running
  • Basketball
  • Soccer
  • Swimming

3. Destress and Decompress

According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, emotional stress can serve as triggers for heart attacks and chest pain. Stress may also contribute to increased blood pressure, putting you at risk for other cardiovascular diseases and complications. Utilizing healthy and effective techniques to manage your stress can help to reduce your risk.

The following tips can help you cope with and manage your stress levels:

  • Practice meditation
  • Get the recommended 7-9 hours of sleep
  • Exercise regularly
  • Seek social support from loved ones
  • Practice deep-breathing exercises

4. Cut Back on Alcohol Consumption

Drinking alcohol excessively puts unnecessary strain on your heart because it raises your blood pressure. It is recommended that men have no more than 2 drinks each day and that women have no more than 1 drink per day.

5. Quit Tobacco Use

Smoking cigarettes and using other tobacco products can increase your risk of heart disease and heart attack. If you smoke, it is recommended that you quit. Secondhand smoke is just as harmful and it is important that you try to avoid it as much as you can.

Cardiac Rehabilitation in Henry County

At Henry County Hospital, we’ve been providing compassionate healthcare since 1919. When it comes to oncological care, each patient can expect individualized care that meets their needs. From education to emotional support, we focus on your individual health and wellness.