- by Portea HomeCare
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- Feb 15 2017
7 ways to keep your heart healthy
The human heart is one stunning organ; it pumps around 7600 liters of blood on a daily basis! As heart diseases can affect anyone and everyone, it is often said that you are never too young or too old to take care of your heart. We should adopt healthy choices to keep cardiovascular diseases at bay. Studies show that women are much more likely to develop and suffer from heart related afflictions as compared to breast cancer in their old age. This article tries to throw light on 7 such simple habits that will help you take good care of your heart and keep it cocooned from things that try to break it.
Indulge in a healthy Mediterranean diet
Vegetable lettuce salad. Olive oil pouring into bowl of salad.
Sticking to a Mediterranean diet can be very good for your heart. Studies show that following such a diet, by and large, can avert disorders and conditions such as Type 2 diabetes, obesity, Alzheimer’s disease and strokes. It is certainly one of the best ways to nutritional and healthy eating. The reason behind this is that a Mediterranean diet is typically low in saturated fats, sodium and cholesterol; things that quickly escalate blood pressure levels and lead to stroke and other heart diseases. A Mediterranean diet primarily consists of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and fish. All Western recipes are usually laden with salt. However, with a Mediterranean diet, herbs and other organic spices replace salt, thus cutting the risk of stroke and other ticker afflictions in half. The best part about a Mediterranean diet is that it is not a separate diet that you’ve got to adhere to. All it ever needs are a few, but important tweaks in the eating plan that you may usually stick to.
Keep off smoke
The fact is that quitting cigarettes isn’t really the easiest thing on the face of this Earth. People usually try the ‘stop and wait’ way of doing it. They quit for a while or smoke way less than what they otherwise did, only to give in to the temptation one night after getting back from work. And suddenly, they might find themselves yearning for that one smoke every single night. The truth is that this doesn’t really work. Neither does it bring upon any health benefit on the individual. Probably, going all ‘cold turkey’ is the way to do it. Smoking narrows the blood vessels, thus marring the normal flow of blood to the heart. This ends up swelling the risks of all sorts of heart and other health woes alarmingly. Also, nipping this habit in the bud before you turn 30 augurs well for you. Should you find it exceedingly difficult to do it, don’t hesitate to join a support group.Nicotine replacement therapy is another cushion you can fall back on. Quit smoking now. A few months from now, you’d be glad you did.
Go red on red meat
If extensive research is anything to go by, regular red meat eaters are 40 per cent more likely to suffer from cardiovascular infirmities. Of these, a heart attack or stroke is the most common. Excessive consumption of red meat causes a step up in the levels of Trimethylamine N- Oxide (TMAO) in the body; something that is linked to impaired heart health. Save the delectable beef steak for that sinful Sunday every week.
Get your share of whole grains and fish
Whole grains, oats, flax, poppy, wheatgerm, granola, sunflower seeds.
Whole grains and fish are super foods for your ticker. Fatty fish are good sources of Omega-6 and Omega-3 fatty acids, the consumption of which increases the possibilities of averting or surviving a heart scare. Start your day with fresh whole grain oats, sprinkled with a dash of honey and your heart will thank you for it. Oats and other whole grain cereals have been medically proven to bring down cholesterol levels by almost 10-23 per cent. A good enough reason to stock on oats!
Do nothing and relax
Relaxation and rest
It is important to take your mind off from work, put your feet up and turn on the jazz. Get your deserved ‘me-time’ every now and then. That is a time when you shouldn’t let any thought wander in your head; be it work or any other commitment. Remember, the right way of de-stressing matters more than the time you spent on relaxing. Read the new Khaled Hosseini book you had been planning since some time now, turn on some chill-step music or compose a new tune of yours. And if you are lucky enough to have your Labrador waiting for you to get back from work, snuggle up to him and lie down still. Risking the possibility of sounding preachy and cliché, there cannot be a better way to de-stress.
Tally up your walk minutes
Exercising for half an hour thrice a week keeps your heart in good shape. With a sedentary lifestyle that is devoid of much activity, one risks the chances of suffering from metabolic syndrome. This is a condition characterized by large deposits of fat in and around the abdominal area, known as visceral fat, high blood fats and blood sugars. Even a short sprint up the stairs or a walk to the nearby park is good for your heart. Make sure you keep on tallying up those minutes regularly.
Go for short and intense workouts
The problem with prolonged workouts is that they may lead to scarring of the heart muscle tissues. High intensity interval training programs ensure steady and fast calorie burn, while preventing any tissue scarring. These have also been proven to reduce cholesterol and blood pressure. These circuit based exercises also work on your ‘Resting Metabolic Rate’, i.e., the rate at which your body expends energy while being at total rest. These improve your endurance, heart health and muscle strength.
Put a rest to all your health-related concerns by downloading PORTEA’s mobile app today. For more information and latest health updates, consult our doctor in the comfort of your home.
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