Heart Month – Tips for Having a Healthy Heart

Heart disease accounts for one third of worldwide deaths each year. During American Heart month, and all year long, it is important to remember the role our lifestyles play in maintaining heart health. Following these tips can help lower your risk for heart disease and other heart problems.

Eat a Heart Healthy Diet

One of the easiest and most effective ways you can keep your heart healthy is by maintaining a healthy diet. Incorporating foods like healthy fats, lean proteins, berries, nuts, fruits and vegetables and limiting processed foods, sugar and high amounts of salt can help keep your heart strong and healthy. Supplying your body with the proper nutrients makes a huge difference when it comes to cardiovascular health.

Exercise Regularly

Staying active and focusing on regularly moving your body can help strengthen your heart and improve your overall health. It is recommended adults get at least 30 minutes of exercise 5 or more days a week to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Cardio exercises and strength training ae very beneficial. However, any type of movement such as walking, playing outside with your kids, or doing yard work can get your heart pumping and fit into your busy lifestyle. It is important to remember, any physical activity is better than none!

Reduce Stress

A stressful lifestyle can lead to many health problems, including heart issues. Your mind and body are directly related and high stress can put you at risk for heart problems. A busy lifestyle can make it hard to reduce stress, but it is important to make your mental health a priority. Some great stress relieving activities include yoga, meditation, reading and any other hobbies that help you relax and de-stress.

Get Adequate Sleep

Sleep is one of the most important, but often one of the most overlooked, aspects of heart and overall health. Deep sleep allows your body to fully relax and recover by lowering your blood pressure and heart rate – replenishing the energy you need to take on the next day. Experts suggest aiming for 8-10 hours of sleep each night.

Quit Smoking

Besides diseases of the heart, smoking increases your risk of cancer, lung disease and many other health problems. If you don’t smoke, don’t start. If you do, taking the steps to quit can benefit your heart and overall quality of life. Giving up smoking can be tough. There are many options that can help you quit. If you’re ready to quit smoking for good, talk to your doctor to see what option is best for you.

Although these tips are simple, they can make a huge difference when it comes to your heart health. Southwoods Cardiology wants to remind you that small adjustments can lower your risk of heart disease. If you are in need of cardiovascular care and are interested in an evaluation or diagnostic testing, contact your primary care physician for a referral.

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