1. Get Moving
Regular, moderate physical exercise is a great start to developing a healthy heart. You don’t have to run marathons either – walking is the perfect introduction to a regular exercise regime, and the only equipment you need is a good pair of walking shoes.
Many of us work in offices but it’s important to reduce or at least break up the time you spend sitting each day, even if you are otherwise active. More and more research is showing that it’s not good for you to be sitting or lying down for long periods during the day. So, take a break from your computer every 30 minutes or so or rotate standing and sitting tasks during the day.
2. Keep Your Weight In Check
If you are overweight, you’re more at risk of heart disease. Your heart will be forced to work harder and you’re more likely to have high blood pressure and cholesterol, both enemies of heart health. Again, exercise and a better diet are the keys to keeping your weight in check and improving hearth health.
3. Eat A Heart-Healthy Diet
Saturated fat, trans fats and cholesterol in your diet can narrow arteries to your heart, and too much salt can raise blood pressure. Eat a heart-healthy diet that includes lean proteins, such as fish and beans, plenty of fruits and vegetables and whole grains.
4. Manage Diabetes
High blood sugar is damaging to your heart. Regular exercise, eating well and losing weight all help to keep blood sugar levels at more-desirable levels. Many people also need medication to manage their diabetes.
5. Ban Smoking
If you never started smoking, that’s perfect! If you already quit, excellent. If you still smoke, stop. Talk to your doctor to find out what method will work best for you. Even people who smoke fewer than five cigarettes a day can have early signs of heart disease. Start now. In just 1 year you can reduce your risk of a heart attack.
6. Keep Tabs On Your Blood Pressure
If it’s too high, your risk of a heart attack and heart disease goes up. Stress management, a healthy diet, and regular exercise can help you manage your blood pressure. Your doctor may also prescribe medications to lower your levels.