The Components of a Heart Healthy Lifestyle
Though heart disease is the single-most widespread health condition among American men and women, it is completely preventable. As many cardiovascular experts can attest, maintaining heart healthy habits can significantly decrease the risk of heart disease in all people. To safeguard your cardiovascular wellness , consider these components to a healthy heart:
What you put into your body largely determines how well it can function. The foods you eat not only provide fuel to sustain bodily functions, but also influence cardiovascular health. Meals with high sodium or fat content can quickly result in high blood pressure or elevated cholesterol levels. To make sure that your diet leads to a healthy heart, include a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins.
Your diet directly affects your weight, too. If you consume more calories than you expend, you will add pounds. Extra weight forces the heart to work harder to ensure that blood flows to every part of the body. Over time, this added burden could cause the heart and arteries to weaken. In some cases, excessive weight can lead to heart attack or stroke. If you suspect that you may weigh more than is healthy for your heart, ask a cardiovascular expert how you can reduce your weight. For the clinically obese, bariatric surgery may be the best option for weight loss.
Consistent Exercise Regimen
To maintain a healthy weight, cardiovascular specialists recommend regular and rigorous exercise. Physical activity can help you expend those additional calories and strengthen the heart muscles. As a result, the heart will pump more easily and efficiently. Exercises like running, biking, swimming, and even walking can get you on your way to a consistent physical fitness routine.
West Hills Hospital & Medical Center wants you to enjoy a lifetime of heart wellness. To speak with a cardiovascular expert about your heart concerns, contact our West Hills facility at (818) 676-4000. To learn more about how to maintain your cardiovascular strength, we encourage you to take advantage of our Consult-A-Nurse referral system.