8 Steps To A Healthy Heart

8 Steps To A Healthy Heart

         Cardiovascular diseases are one of the leading causes of death among men and women in the United States according to the American Heart Association. Usually heart diseases occur due to atherosclerosis when plaque formation occurs in the arteries.

         This build up occurs gradually and over period of time the plaque hardens along the walls of the arteries leading to heart attacks, blood clots or strokes.

         There are many factors that can lead to cardiovascular diseases. Some of the factors can be controlled, while others cannot be, like genes or gender. Therefore, the factors that can be controlled should be eliminated to ensure a healthy heart.

         Here are 8 steps to a health heart that will help to lower the chances of getting cardiovascular diseases:

  1. A person should know what risk factors he or she has. For instance, if there is a heart disease in the immediate family, then the person is at a higher risk of getting the same disease. As a person ages, the chances of getting heart disease increases. The same is also true for a person who suffers from diabetes.
  2. You should change your dietary pattern by eliminating foods that can cause cardiovascular diseases. Therefore, limit your intake of fried and greasy foods and red meats. Instead concentrate on eating fresh vegetables, fruits, lean meat, whole grains and fiber-rich foods.
  3. In case you are overweight, you should work towards losing the excess weight. Then, you should make efforts to maintain the weight. People who are overweight have higher chances of developing heart diseases. Proper weight can be maintained by regular exercise and eating healthily.
  4. Make sure you exercise for at least 30 minutes few times in a week. You can go for a walk, do house cleaning, take up jogging or even gardening. The important thing is to be physically active.
  5. Make it a point to get your blood pressure and cholesterol levels checked once a year. In case you have high blood pressure or cholesterol, then you are at a higher risk of developing cardiovascular diseases. You would need to change your eating habits and also do regular exercise to help bring down the pressure and cholesterol levels. At times, the doctor may also prescribe medication.
  6. In case you are smoker, now would be a good time to quit. People, who give up smoking, reduce their risk of developing heart diseases by half within a year of quitting.
  7. Learn to handle stress better. You can take up meditation or yoga to help you cope with stress.
  8. If you notice any warning signs like burning sensation in the chest, do not neglect it. Other symptoms of cardiovascular diseases include pain in the chest radiating to the neck, jaw and arm or shortness of breath. If you notice these symptoms, you should immediately consult your doctor.
8 Steps To A Healthy Heart