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5 Lifestyle Changes to Prevent Heart Disease

1. Quit smoking

 

About a third of the deaths from heart disease are caused by smoking. This is quite shocking when you consider that we have known about the negative effects of smoking for decades now. It’s also important to not that it is not only cigarettes that are harmful. The new trend of “vaping” still exposes you to nicotine, toxins, metals, and other contaminants. Quitting smoking is one of the most important things that you can do for your health. Not only will it help prevent heart disease, but also many cancers and emphysema.

2. Eat a healthy diet

 

A healthy diet is imperative for heart health. It is one of the most important things you can do to lower your risk of heart disease. The food you eat has a direct effect on your cholesterol, blood pressure, diabetes, and weight. A healthy diet can lower the risk for many chronic conditions including Coronary Heart Disease (CAD), which kills over 400 000 Americans every year according CDC data.

 

Cooking meals at home is the best option and will allow you to easily swap out unhealthy foods for healthier alternatives.

Make healthier choices when dining out

Sometimes we just don’t feel like cooking, or we may want to join friends or family for a nice meal out. Keep these tips in mind to help you make healthier choices at restaurants or when ordering take-out.

 

3. Exercise Regularly

 

Exercising only 20 minutes a day can lower your cholesterol and blood pressure and help you maintain a healthy weight. Any exercise is better than none. You should check with your doctor to discuss how much and what types of exercise are right for you.

It’s ok to make exercise fun too! Try finding things you enjoy doing that help keep you active like gardening or dancing. Changing up your exercise can also help keep it interesting so you don’t get bored with your routine.

 

4. Limit Alcohol Consumption

 

Too much alcohol can be dangerous for your heart. It increases your risk of heart disease by raising blood pressure. The calories in alcohol also increase your risk of heart disease by contributing to body fat and weight gain possibly leading to obesity.

It is still possible to enjoy an occasional alcoholic beverage, just be sure to check with your doctor to make sure that you are not drinking more than the recommended amount. Moderation is key.

 

5. Control Stress Levels

 

It’s easy to forget that stress increases our risk for heart disease. Stress can raise blood pressure and affect our mental health leading to overeating, drinking, smoking and other unhealthy habits that are bad for our health. Here are a few ways we can limit our stress levels:

 

 

We hope you’ve found this information helpful and that it inspires you to make some positive changes in your life. If you want to learn more about how to prevent heart disease, please visit our website where we have tons of resources available for both patients and healthcare professionals. Remember, the key to a healthy heart is making small changes today that can add up to big benefits down the road. Thanks for reading!

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