Tips for a Heart Healthy Life

Give your heart the same amount of love you give your children. Here are some easy tips for a heart healthy life. GO RED NORTH FULTON!

Most of us could stand to live a bit healthier, especially when it comes to heart health. Drugs won’t cure heart disease, although it can certainly help manage it, it is your lifestyle that plays the biggest part. It’s likely that some aspects of your lifestyle put you at risk for heart disease.

Common risk factors for heart disease:

  • Smoking tobacco
  • Having high blood pressure
  • Being overweight
  • Having unhealthy blood fat and cholesterol levels
  • Having diabetes
  • Being physically inactive
  • Being over 55 years old for men and over 65 years old for women
  • Having family members who had heart disease or a heart attack early in life: under 55 for your father or brother; under 65 for your mother or sister

Some heart disease risk factors you can’t control, such as your age or health problems of your parents. However, some risk factors are related to your lifestyle, such as smoking, being overweight, and having an unhealthy diet. These lifestyle factors may have helped contribute to your heart disease. And these same risk factors will continue to make your heart disease get worse.

Luckily, the opposite is true as well. Adopting a heart-healthy diet and a healthier lifestyle can improve your health, even if you already have high blood pressure or other forms of heart disease.

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Here’s what a heart-healthy lifestyle can do for you:

  • Lower your blood pressure
  • Lower your bad cholesterol and triglyceride (blood fat) levels
  • Ease the stress on your heart
  • Lower your risk of heart attack
  • Lower your risk of stroke
  • Prolong your life

Choosing a heart-healthy diet and lifestyle can even help your medications work more effectively. In some cases you might even be able to reduce or eliminate some medications. But what exactly is a heart-healthy lifestyle?

Seven lifestyle areas where changes make a difference to your heart health:

  • Smoking
  • Body weight
  • Diet
  • Use of sodium
  • Exercise
  • Alcohol
  • Stress control

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