Cardiovascular conditions are one of the leading cause of death in men and women. Heart health is important for everyone, but recent scientific-evidence proves heart disease in females often presents differently than it does in males, which can be problematic if overlooked. Heart diseases are now controllable and avoidable. There are many things and activities you can take part in to get your heart pumping such as running, walking, skiing, fitness class, weight lifting etc.
Some of the things that you can do to increase your heart health are:
1. Be smoke free – It is the most important step you can take to reduce your risk of heart disease. If you do smoke and would like to quit, there are many programs available regarding smoking cessation by the government.
2. Be stress free – Mental Health includes our emotional, psychological and social well-being. It not only effects how we think but also how we feel and act. In order to be stress free, be aware of your stressors and learn how to deal with them. Breathing exercises, yoga and meditation can play an important role in reducing stress.
3. Healthy Eating – Healthy eating contributes not only to your overall health but also your heart health as well. Fruit and vegetables should be an essential part of your diet. Choose whole grain, high fiber food with less salt and no added sugar.
4. Exercise – Live your life according to the motto “Move more, Sit less i.e. get up more and sit less throughout the day. If your job requires you to sit for extended hours and you can't spare an hour for exercise, there are exercises designed to match your busy life. It could be light intensity exercise such as walk or stretch for 5 minutes every 2 hours. Any activity is better than nothing. There is no excuse "you have to Move it, Move it, to be Physically, Physically, Physically Fit"(Song: movie Madagascar)
Set small goals like 30 minutes’ walk per day, cardio or stretching exercises for 20 minutes 5 days a week etc. if you feel less motivated join a fitness challenge or have an exercise buddy. Few tips you can add to your daily life are
a. Take stairs instead of elevators
b. Don’t look for a close by parking spot
c. Walk while talking to your friend on cellphone
d. Walk or ride your bike to work or to do errands
Your heart is an important organ that needs to function properly in order to maintain a healthy body. Involve you and your loved ones in your journey to a healthy heart.
Fun Fact: A 30 minute walk per day can reduce your risk of heart attack by up to 50%.