Natural Ways to Increase Your Heart Health
Leading a healthy lifestyle is the best way to take of your heart’s health. Healthy activities like exercise paired with a good diet can dramatically reduce your risk of having any heart related diseases.
You can even reverse the progression of coronary heart disease with some lifestyle changes like having a regular fitness routine, staying active and managing your weight. While medications can help in lowering cholesterol and the risk factors associated with heart diseases, people who improve their heart health naturally have a far superior quality of life. Here are some steps to increase your heart health naturally.
Spend more time moving and less time sitting as regular physical activity is one of the best ways to improve your heart health. It also helps you control your weight, improves your body composition and also decreases the risk of heart diseases. Exercise and vigorous physical activity is also a good way to reduce stress and improve the quality of sleep, strengthen bones and prevents falls.
Being smoke-free is one of the best things to do to improve your heart health. Studies are strong in proving that smoking also is the cause behind a lot of health-threatening conditions including lung and kidney cancer, emphysema and breathing problems. It also affects the people around you – especially children – and puts them at the risk of developing serious health problems. Talk with your healthcare provider about scientifically proven ways to quit smoking and make life better.
Lose Belly Fat
While being obese is linked with several major risk factors including heart disease, type 2 diabetes and blood pressure; belly fat, in particular, is more dangerous. Recent studies indicate that even people with normal weight who have a pot belly dramatically increase their risk of dying. Even if the fat seems to be accumulated in the belly, it leads to chronic inflammation and plaque build-up in the body.
Maintain Healthy Weight
Maintaining a healthy weight not only helps you reduce your chances of having a heart disease, but also protects you from developing other health problems. Achieve and maintain a body mass index (BMI) that is between 18 and 25. Also make a note that the waist circumference should be less than 40 in men and less than 35 in women.
Manage Your Blood Cholesterol
Blood pressure isn’t something that you can usually feel. But if it is too high it needs to be treated as it is a risk factor for heart disease. Especially the LDL cholesterol, which is often referred to as the ‘bad’ cholesterol, has to be reduced to reduce the risk of cardiovascular events as it contains particles that cause plaque build-up in the arteries that lead to blockage.
Eat Nutritious Food
Making specific changes to your diet has a long way to go in preventing heart related diseases as a healthy and varied diet helps you manage your weight, blood pressure and control cholesterol levels. While reducing your salt intake is good for managing blood pressure, replacing unhealthy fats with healthy fats help in decreasing heart attack risks.
Take Care of Your Mental Health
Achieving optimum emotional/mental health helps in improving heart health naturally. People who are more depressed are at a greater risk of developing heart diseases as are people who are socially isolated and do not have good social support. Often times, depression is more than just feeling sad or low. Talk to your health care provider if you feel depressed for more than two weeks and try to lead a good social life with family and friends.