Heart disease, also known as coronary heart disease (CHD) and coronary artery disease, occurs then plaque builds up in the arteries blocking or slowing the blood flow and flow of oxygen. A coronary artery is simply a blood vessel that carries blood to the heart. These arteries are shaped like narrow tubes. Plaque is a fatty substance that builds up in the arteries. This slows and can even stop the blood flow to the heart, creating a dangerous health condition. This can cause angina and even heart attack.
Heart disease does not discriminate. It can affect men as well as women. In some cases it may be hereditary or it may develop over a period of years.
Heart disease can also come with advancing age as plaque builds up in the arteries over many years. People who are overweight, diabetic or have high blood pressure are also at a great risk as well as those who have high cholesterol. Heart disease, though, can also come from smoking, excessive drinking of alcoholic beverages, eating a diet high in fat and sugars and leading a sedentary lifestyle. This is why it is important to make healthy choices and refrain from activities that can be potentially harmful.
Here are 13 tips for reducing your risk of heart disease. By following these guidelines, you can possibly prevent your chances of getting heart disease completely.
1. Limit alcohol
Drinking too much alcohol can raise blood pressure, increase cardiomyopathy, stroke, cancer, and other diseases It can contribute to high triglycerides and produce irregular heartbeats. Excessive alcohol consumption contributes to obesity, alcoholism, suicide and accidents.
2. Don’t smoke
Nicotine increases your blood pressure. When you smoke, the nicotine you inhale into your system stimulates the release of adrenaline. This, in turn, causes your blood vessels to constrict and your heart beats faster.
3. Follow a heart-healthy diet
Try to limit saturated fats, foods high in sodium, and added sugars. Eat plenty of fresh fruit, vegetables, and whole grains. The DASH diet is an example of an eating plan that can help you to lower your blood pressure and cholesterol, two things that can lower your risk of heart disease.
4. Lower Your Blood Pressure
Though it doesn’t cause any symptom, but can be very dangerous for your heart health. Therefore, it is important for you to take as much as necessary preventive measures to lower down your high blood pressure.
5. Maintain a healthy weight
Sedentary lifestyles and obesity has increased prevalence over the past decade. About 33% of adult women are obese while 60% of both women and men have no physical activity.
6. Make sure that you get enough sleep
Guidelines from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the Sleep Research Society recommend adults get at least seven hours of sleep per night on a regular basis.
Studies have found that getting less than this amount is associated with heart disease risk factors like higher stress, increased inflammation, high blood pressure, and weight gain.
7. Reduce the sugar
I’ve always had a sweet tooth, but I’ve cut back on sweets to improve my health and manage my weight. Most of us consume much more sugar than we realize. It lurks in juices, jellies, jams, cookies, candies, cakes, pies, regular soda pop, cereals, snack bars, condiments, and many other foods.
Start with obvious sources of sugar and switch to naturally sweet foods like fruits “fresh, canned without syrup, frozen without sugar, or dried – go lightly here as these are concentrated sources of calories”. And don’t think switching to raw sugar, honey or agave syrup is better – it’s still simple sugar.
Read labels: look for the number of grams of sugar per serving and choose alternatives that are lower in sugar. One more caution: some studies indicate that even artificially sweetened foods and beverages may still create cravings for sweets.
8. Get The Stress Out
If your life is hectic, you need to find a way to calm down and let it go. If you have a closing deadline for an important work project all while having two wild and hungry kids, an out-of-town husband, three disobedient pets, and a pile of laundry/dishes to do, you are not living a healthy lifestyle and your stress is becoming a mountain of death. Take an hour after work and dedicate the time to yourself only. No one or thing can bother you and you can spend it however you like. For instance, you can take a nice warm bubble bath, do some Yoga exercises, or get a professional massage at a spa. It’s up to you.
9. Exercise regularly
Research has shown that at least 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity physical activity can help lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol and keep your weight at a healthy level.
Exercise can be as simple as walking around the neighborhood or strolling around the mall. If you have a dog, spend an extra 10 minutes outside when you’re walking him/her around. If you’re not an outdoorsy person, go to the nearest shopping mall and window shop every store that you can. Simple walking exercises has been proven to strengthen the heart and even reverse severe heart conditions.
10. Count Your Calories
Calories not only increase your weight, but also leads to a number of heart diseases and stroke is one of them. To prevent it or to stay healthy, you should limit the intake of calories. Binge on fruits and vegetables that help you control it and prevent major health disease.
11.Extra dose of vitamins.
Vitamin E, B6 and iron have significant roles in cardiovascular disease prevention. Aside from the vitamins you get from a healthy diet, loading up on vitamins in capsule form can be beneficial.
12. Eat Salmon
This fish is an outstanding source of omega-3 fatty acids and is known to diminish the risk of inflammation and blood clots. The fats work by keeping your cholesterol level at its normal state. Eat salmon or some fish from the ocean like tuna, sardines, or herrings at least two times a week.
13. See your doctor regularly
Get regular checkups and make sure that you stay on top of any health concerns. Additionally, if you are at risk for heart disease, you may want to talk to your doctor about taking a low dose of aspirin each day.