Dr Sandeep J Kadam gives you tips on improving heart health
Heart health can be improved. Know how.
How to improve Heart Health
Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death worldwide, and it's mostly preventable by changing the lifestyle and managing risk factors. Change is an important part of living with heart disease or trying to prevent it. There are tips below which can improve heart health.
Avoid tobacco: If you currently smoke, chew tobacco, vape, or use other tobacco products, quit right away — your health care team can help. If you don't smoke now, keep it that way.
Drink alcohol in moderation, if at all: Heavy alcohol use is detrimental to your heart health. Although some research indicates moderate consumption of certain alcoholic beverages may have positive health effects, limiting your intake to a maximum of one drink per day or abstaining from alcohol altogether is best.
Be active: Try to do aerobic exercise for at least 20 to 30 minutes a day, three to five times per week. Work your way up to 150 minutes of cardio each week. Get your heart rate up by a simple activity like walking at a brisk pace. Your daily movement doesn't need to be overly strenuous.
Maintain a healthy weight: Like your chequebook, your weight is a matter of deposits and withdrawals. You need to exercise regularly and lower portion sizes and calorie intake at meals to lose weight or maintain a healthy size. Simply put, to lose weight you must burn more calories than you consume.
Eat a nutritious diet: Healthy and fresh food choices — such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and legumes — lower your risk of obesity, heart disease and diabetes, as well as make you feel better than when you eat processed and junk food.
Control your risk factors: Get physical examinations or checkups at least yearly. Doing so will help you monitor health conditions and allow your provider to examine you for high blood pressure (hypertension), high cholesterol and diabetes. If you have these conditions, talk to your health care team about medicines and lifestyle changes to help you control them, which will lower your risk for heart disease.
Family history: While neglecting the prevention tips poses major risk factors, family history — although uncontrollable — can be problematic. This makes staying on top of heart health increasingly important. A family history of heart disease puts you at an elevated risk, and you're even more susceptible.
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