Steps To Take For A Healthy Heart
It’s no surprise that Valentine’s Day is in February because February is also known as American Heart Month. It is a time to raise awareness about cardiovascular health and heart disease. The body is like a machine made up of many different parts that all have their own function. When one part of the machine does not work, then the others parts are also affected. As Plato said, “the part can never be well, unless the whole is well.”
One of the main organs of the body is the heart. As we know the heart is responsible for pumping our blood throughout the body. Our blood carries oxygen and as the heart pumps, oxygen is being delivered to the rest of the body. Our tissues need oxygen to survive, so if our heart does not pump properly, then the blood can have difficulty getting to some areas of the body. Without proper oxygenation of tissues, they can die. This can become a life threatening issue if not addressed within adequate time.
This is why taking care of your heart and your overall health is so important and the topic of this week’s blog.
Heart disease is known as the leading cause of death in the United States. It is a disease that refers to many different conditions. The main condition of heart disease is coronary artery disease, which commonly results in a heart attack. Coronary artery disease is caused by the build up of plaque, or cholesterol, in the blood vessels which impairs the blood’s ability to flow through the body. As stated above, our body needs blood to provide oxygen which sustains our life, so this build up can quickly become an issue.
In fact, a heart attack is just that. A heart attack happens when the build up of cholesterol is so bad that it occludes the blood vessel, which then blocks the blood flow to the heart. This then deprives the heart of oxygen which leads to what we call a heart attack.
While heart disease can affect anyone, there are many different lifestyle and dietary factors that can make one more susceptible to heart disease than someone else. Some risk factors that may increase someone’s susceptibility to developing heart disease include but not limited to: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, smoking, obesity, and lack of physical activity.
We can’t control our genetics but we can control how we live and eat. For some, heart disease may be preventable— if you take the necessary steps for a healthy heart. Action must be taken to incorporate healthy lifestyle habits into your daily routines.
Below are 6 different healthy habits that you can incorporate into your life to help promote a healthy heart.
This is a very well known habit for promoting health. The best thing about exercise is that it is customizable to you. Your idea of exercise may be a 30 minute jog, while someone else feels better off of an hour long session of pilates. The overall point is that you get your body moving for at least 30 minutes everyday.
#2.Consume a heart health diet:
As we mentioned, cholesterol is the substance that causes the build up in the vessels. Therefore, limiting your cholesterol intake can help to reduce the risk of building up that harmful plaque in the body. Omit or limit sugar as it leads to inflammation in the body.
#3. Quite smoking and vaping:
We all know that smoking and vaping is unhealthy for you. Even though it is hard to quit, try slowly cutting down to help reduce your risk of developing heart disease. Give yourself a date you want to quit but and make it happen. Let 2023 be the year of action.
#4. Manage stress:
Increased stress can lead to high blood pressure. As we know, high blood pressure raises someone’s risk to developing heart disease. Managing your stress may seem impossible, but once you find your preferred method of stress management, the health benefits will start.
#5.Get regular health screenings:
This is one of the most efficient ways to promote health as it is a one of the primary ways of prevention. Getting regular health screenings allows you to not only have early detection to certain health related illnesses, but it also allows you to gather information on how to prevent the initial development of these issues.
#6. Floss daily:
It seems unlikely but gum disease and heart disease may be connected. More research needs to be done but people with gum disease are two to three times more likely to have a stroke or heart attack. The link may be inflammation which seems to cause a narrowing of important blood vessels.
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States and that is to not be taken lightly. Don’t become another statistic. Consider incorporating these healthy habits into your life now to reduce your risk of developing heart disease later.