Is your family history riddled with heart disease? Then you need to read these 10 ways to prevent a heart attack!
These tips for keeping your heart healthy are from the coaches at Gordian Health Solutions. They describe ten ways to reduce your risk of a heart attack, which can also prevent other types of chronic illness.
Before the tips, a quip about cardiac health:
“Except for the occasional heart attack, I never felt better,” said Dick Cheney.
To learn more about heart disease – and reduce your risk of a heart attack - read Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease: The Revolutionary, Scientifically Proven, Nutrition-Based Cure.
And, read on for ten tips for keeping your heart healthy…
10 Ways to Prevent a Heart Attack
1. Brush up on your family’s history of heart disease. Individuals who have a strong history of heart disease in their families are more likely to develop it themselves. Find out if the risk of heart attacks run in your family. If so, it’s even more important for you to identify and address other health risk factors you might have.
If you seem to always be struggling with your health, read Easy Cures for Common Health Problems – From Gas to Warts.
2. Know your “health numbers.” Keeping tabs on a few sets of numbers can help you and your doctor find out how your risk factors measure up. Numbers to keep track of include your body mass index (BMI), blood pressure, waist circumference and cholesterol levels. If one or more of these numbers is off base, your doctor may suggest lifestyle changes, medication, or weight loss.
3. Eat healthier foods. Strive for a heart healthy diet that’s rich in fruits and vegetables. Choose lean sources of protein: fish, chicken, turkey. Opt for low-fat dairy products over the heavier ones, and incorporate whole grains into your meals. Limit salt intake to help control blood pressure; increase fiber in your diet to lower cholesterol; eat omega 3 fatty oils to reduce inflammation in the body and thin the blood.
Learn all you can about heart healthy diets! Read What is the Mediterranean Diet? Food That Fights Chronic Illness.
4. Exercise your body, exercise your heart. Engaging in regular physical activity reaps benefit upon benefit for your body and mind. Walking is a great way to reduce your risk of a heart attack. Start slow and gradually progress, striving for 30 minutes of brisk walking-or any other type of cardiovascular exercise you enjoy-five days a week. Scheduling your exercise keeps you on track and can give you a sense of accomplishment. Be sure to check with your doctor before beginning any exercise program.
5. Maintain a healthy body weight. Obesity is a major risk factor for coronary heart disease, as well as a number of other serious conditions. Work with your doctor or caregiver to determine an ideal body weight, and keep tabs on your pounds. Don’t be overwhelmed if you have a lot of weight to lose; even modest weight loss can have positive effects and lower your risk factors of heart disease.
If you’re overweight, read How I Finally Lost That Last 20 Pounds After I Turned 40.
6. Avoid alcohol and tobacco. To keep your heart healthy, try to limit your alcohol intake to two drinks per day for men, and one drink per day for women. Stop smoking and avoid second-hand smoke. Of course, these steps are much easier said than done, but today there are numerous resources out there to make these changes less painful (e.g., nicotine patches and gum, support groups).
7. Keep your stress levels low. Managing emotional stress improves your overall health and well-being. For instance, high stress and anxiety can cause a temporary increase in high blood pressure-or lead you to overeat, drink too much alcohol and smoke cigarettes. To reduce stress: avoid bottling up your emotions; make a list of positive things in your life and refer to it often; place your favorite inspirational passage on the bathroom mirror where you’ll see it daily; exercise on a regular basis; live on a budget to reduce financial stress; limit your exposure to negative influences.
8. Maintain a healthy mouth. Your mouth is a mirror to the inside. In other words, problems in the mouth can be a red flag for something larger going on inside your body. Make good oral health a habit: Brush and floss twice a day and visit the dentist twice a year for a cleaning and exam.
9. Be aware of your physical health. Learn the warning signs of an unhealthy heart or heart attack, and don’t ignore them! If you experience any of the following, seek medical care immediately: chest pain and/or pressure that may or may not radiate down one or both arms, jaw or shoulders; numbness; tingling in the arms; sweating; dizziness; feeling faint; intense feelings of anxiety.
10. Get support from your doctor. If your doctor suggests major lifestyle changes to reduce your risk factors, be sure to ask for help and to solicit support from your family and friends. Reach out to people who have had to make similar changes.
Are you dealing with heart disease? Read 5 Ways to Cope With Chronic Illness When You Don’t Look Sick.
Gordian Health Solutions helps individuals achieve and maintain healthy lifestyles and address chronic conditions.