Undeniably, a healthy lifestyle is the best defense against heart disease. Lifestyle choices in your control can keep you on a heart-healthy path. The Mayo Clinic offers a concise set of strategies for implementing a heart-healthy lifestyle:
1. Quit Smoking
When you give up smoking, your risk of heart disease drops dramatically within one year. No Matter how long or how much you smoked, you’ll start reaping the rewards as soon as you quit.
2. Stay Active
Guidelines recommend that you get at least 30 to 60 minutes of moderately intense physical activity most days of the week. Gardening, housekeeping, taking the stairs and walking the dog count toward your total time. You don’t have to exercise strenuously to achieve benefits.
3. Eat For Your Heart
Heart-healthy eating isn’t all about cutting back; it’s about watching what you eat. Most people need to add more fruits and vegetables to their diet with a goal of five to ten servings a day.
Limiting certain fats is also important. Of the types of fats, saturated fat and trans fat increase the risk of coronary artery disease by raising blood cholesterol levels.
4.) Watch Your Weight
Reducing your weight by just 10% can decrease your blood pressure, lower your blood cholesterol level and reduce your risk of diabetes.
5.) Regular Health Monitoring
High blood pressure and high cholesterol can damage your heart and blood vessels. Screening can tell you what your number s are and whether you need to take action.
See http://www.mayoclinic.com/ for the full article, “5 medication-free strategies to help prevent heart disease.”