American Heart Month

Heart disease is the number one killer in the United States. Every year over half a million American citizens die from heart diseases. Victims can be anyone. There are steps we can take to reduce the risk of dying from heart disease and the month of February is a good time to make changes in your lifestyle.

There are hereditary factors that cause heart disease and high cholesterol, high blood pressure, obesity, and tobacco use plus physical inactivity and alcohol abuse are just a few of the many risk factors in heart problems. Many of these can be prevented and controlled.

Take action against heart disease by eating nutritiously, keeping your weight at a healthy level and be active. Just sitting and watching television can bring on heart problems. Avoid tobacco products and moderate your alcohol intake. Work with your doctor to help prevent conditions that can lead to heart disease. Read pamphlets put out by the American Heart Association for specifics on eating and exercise patterns.

The first step in preventing heart disease is nutrition and eating patterns. Educate yourself on how to make changes in your diet. Heart-healthy foods include those foods with antioxidants, lean protein, and fiber and omega-e fatty acids. These will keep your lipids levels in check. Try yummy salmon for omega-3 fatty acids. There is a great deal of lean proteins in coldwater fish. Eat halibut, tuna and salmon at least two times a week. Walnuts contain huge amounts of omega-3 fatty acids and try blueberries for antioxidants. Antioxidants kill free radicals that cause damage to heart cells. Do not like spinach? Well, spinach loves your heart. You can find antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids, plus B vitamins and fiber in spinach. Folate is import for building healthy red blood and heart cells.

During American Heart Month or February exercise for optimum heart health. At least thirty minutes per day is the recommendation of the American Heart Association. Try breaking exercise routines into 15-minute segments if you don”t have thirty minutes of time in one block. Use an aerobic exercise like walking. Walking is enjoyable, inexpensive and you can fit walking into your day with no problem. Climbing stairs will give you maximum heart health benefits. Whether you climb stairs at home or on a stair machine you will find that climbing stairs will get you to your target heart rate and strengthen heart muscles.

Go for a bike ride. The pumping action of the large muscles in your legs is a great aerobic exercise for your entire body and especially for your heart. Ride a road bike or a stationary bike, but just pedal. Do make sure whatever bike you ride is proportioned for your body. This will prevent injuries and falls.

If you are young or at any age, you need to change your lifestyle and stop using fast foods, alcohol, sugary drinks, and smoking. Use exercise and nutrition to cut down on obesity and diabetes. Go outside and stop playing video games and sitting continually in front of your computer. Move and play outside no matter what your age. Did you know that high salt intake and energy drinks can cause heart problems? Energy drinks are loaded with sugar and calories and contain stimulants that may have long-term effects on your heart. It is logical thinking to know that illegal drugs contribute to heart problems.

February is American Heart Month. Take care of the most important organ in your body by being practical and using good nutrition and exercise practices. You are at risk no matter what age you are if you continue using bad habits that do cause a decrease in your quality of life.


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