A healthy heart is imperative to leading a healthy and fruitful life, and having a healthy heart boils down to having a balanced diet and having a regular exercise regime. Northwest Regional Health has physicians who are here to give you expert advice on the best ways to maintain your heart’s vitality and youthful vigor even as you age.
Here Are Eight Tips for Keeping Your Heart Strong and Healthy:
1. Reduce Sugar Intake
Too much sugar increases the risk of obesity and heart disease since excess sugar in the body is converted into fat that clogs blood vessels and could lead to high blood pressure.
2. Reduce Intake of Saturated Fat
Too much-saturated fat has been found to increase cholesterol levels in the blood, which leads to clogging up of blood vessels and could lead to a heart attack or stroke. That said, you need to cut down on butter, ghee, margarine, and processed foods like cakes, pastries, and pies, and instead take natural fats like olive oil, canola oil, nuts, and seeds that heart specialists highly recommend.
3. Eat More Fruit and Vegetables
Have you been wondering why you are constantly reminded to eat your salad? Well, fruits and vegetables have various essential mineral elements such as potassium, calcium, and magnesium, which help lower blood pressure keeping your heart healthy. Studies have also found that fibers from fruits and vegetables reduce cholesterol levels in the blood, thereby reducing the chances of heart attacks.
4. Have More Fish
Heart specialists highly recommend oily fish like fresh tuna and salmon because they’re good sources of low-fat protein and are rich in omega-3, which is excellent in controlling cholesterol levels in your body.
5. Reduce Salt
Having the recommended amount of salt helps reduce the risk of high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease. You can achieve this by avoiding too many processed foods because of high amounts of salt and always making sure you cook with just enough salt to avoid using any salt while at the table.
6. Get More Exercise
Regular exercise promotes blood circulation, keeps arteries and other blood vessels flexible, and ensures you are always fit and not susceptible to cardiovascular diseases associated with obesity.
7. Cut Down on Alcohol
Excessive alcohol can lead to high blood pressure, abnormal heartbeat, stroke, or cardiomyopathy, a disorder that affects the heart muscle.
8. Quit Smoking
Smoking doubles the likelihood of having a heart attack and is one of the leading causes of cardiovascular diseases. Nicotine in cigarettes reduces how much oxygen goes to the heart, thereby increasing blood pressure and also makes it more likely for blood clots to form, which could trigger heart attacks or strokes.