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4 Things You Can Do to Reduce Your Risk of Heart Disease

April 2, 2020
heart health

Between the risks and costs associated with heart disease, it is vital to take charge of you and your family's heart health early on. Here are four ways to keep yourself and your loved ones healthy:

1. Exercise and maintaining regular physical activity are crucial in preventing heart disease. The health benefits of exercise include weight loss, lower blood pressure, and improved mood, all of which can help with healthy heart functioning. This doesn't have to mean getting a gym membership -- save time and money by going for a run in your neighborhood, jump-roping, or doing aerobic exercises right at home. Get your children involved while also having quality family time by playing outdoor sports with them or inventing a game that will keep them moving.

2. Pay attention to what you are eating. Poor diets high in cholesterol can contribute to clogged arteries and reduced heart function. It can be hard to eat healthy on the run, so consider meal-prepping and packing nuts, fruits, vegetables ahead of time so that there is a snack to reach for when things are busy.

3. Anxiety is widespread in the U.S., with approximately 40 million adults suffering from some form of anxiety. Many people live with anxiety without ever getting treatment. While it can be difficult to recognize that there is a problem, much less to seek help, anxiety can harm the heart by raising one's blood pressure. If you or a loved one is experiencing anxiety, a combination of lifestyle changes such as exercise, improved diet, and a visit to the doctor can help combat your risk of heart disease.

4. Life is hectic, and sometimes heart health takes a backseat to other concerns such as family obligations, work, or social events. But when a problem arises, don't ignore it-- if you are experiencing chest pain or tightness, dizziness, or abnormal heartbeat, as well as any new or changing symptoms, see a doctor. Your health is worth the time, and early treatment can reduce costs in the long run.

Small lifestyle changes and keeping your general care practitioner up-to-date with any health concerns can ultimately be life-saving and well worth getting out of your usual routine. Starting now and staying disciplined and on top of your health could add years onto your life and make those years happier and brighter.

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