According to the World Health Organization, cardiovascular diseases claim an estimated 17.9 million lives each year globally. Sadly, the case might not be different in 2022, which calls for more awareness of maintaining heart health. Luckily, you can take charge of your cardiac health by making lifestyle changes and adopting a healthy diet. Below, we’ll share some tips to help you keep your heart in check this year and beyond.
Cardiac health is a serious matter that requires regular monitoring and treatment by a qualified doctor. The best way to select the right cardiac health doctor is by asking for referrals from your primary care physician or other healthcare providers who have referred patients to specialists in the past.
You can also ask friends and family members for recommendations and do some online research. However, don’t just rely on the doctor’s website or marketing materials when making your decision; be sure to read reviews from other patients.
Once you have a few potential doctors in mind, schedule an appointment with each one and ask lots of questions about their experience, training, and treatment philosophy. Besides checking other training and experience certifications, it’s crucial that you also check if they have an ACLS certification from reputable training centers like Newcastle Training. You need to be sure that whoever will care for the most crucial organ in your body is the perfect fit for the role.
A study published in the Journal of American College of Cardiology found that those who increased their intake of plant-based proteins had a lower risk of heart disease. While you don’t have to go vegan or vegetarian, simply adding more plants into your regular diet can help improve your cardiac health.
These fruits and vegetables will provide heart-healthy nutrients such as fiber, potassium, and vitamins C and E. They’re also low in carbohydrates and calories, which helps to keep your weight under check. Great options include spinach, broccoli, tomatoes, blueberries, oranges, and bananas.
If you ended the year 2021 on a low, 2022 has to be the year you make a difference in your workout and exercise goals. Exercise is a vital part of remaining active and keeping your heart healthy. Not only does it help keep your weight down, but it can also improve your cholesterol levels and lower your blood pressure.
Try to get at least 30 minutes of exercise per day, whether that’s going for a walk or hitting the gym. If your motivation levels start dropping, you could use the help of training groups or family and friends to keep you going. Whatever you do, ensure you don’t lose track of your fitness goals.
Anxiety and stress significantly negatively impact your weight-loss program and your cardiac health. You should aim to find effective ways to manage your stress levels to support your heart and overall health. Here are some of the key ways to manage stress:
- Identify your stress: The first step is identifying what triggers your stress. You can do that by monitoring your daily activities and writing them down to determine where your stress emanates from. Once you know that, you can start developing strategies to deal with it.
- Yoga: Yoga is an effective way to control anxiety and stress.
- Listen to soothing music: Make it a habit to listen to your favorite soothing music every day for at least 15 minutes. This is a great way to relax and get rid of stress.
- Mindfulness meditation: Mindfulness meditation is also a great way to reduce your stress levels and improve cardiac health.
- Get enough sleep: Getting enough sleep is essential for your overall health, especially your heart. Getting at least seven to eight hours of sleep every night helps reduce stress levels and prevent heart disease.
- Talk to a counselor: If stress is taking a toll on your mental health, don’t hesitate to talk to a counselor, and they can help analyze your stress levels and suggest methods for coping with the stress without harming your physical and mental health.
- Connect with others: Sometimes, all it takes is a good chat with a friend to get out of your head and into the real world. Healthy social relations have been linked with reduced stress and heart disease.
These and many other stress-reduction tips your doctor will share with you will go a long way to improving your cardiac health.
Alcohol consumption has been associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular diseases, especially in women. Although light drinking may be suitable for heart health, heavy and binge drinking can lead to high blood pressure, a common risk factor for cardiovascular diseases.
This happens in two phases; at the time of drinking and extended effects in the long run. At the time of drinking, alcohol will lead to a temporary increase in heart rate and blood pressure. However, in the long run, high levels of alcohol intake can lead to incessant increased heart rate, weak heart muscles, high blood pressure, and irregular heartbeat.
Smoking is known to cause high blood pressure, increase the levels of bad cholesterol (LDL), and reduce good cholesterol (HDL). All these factors can lead to clogged arteries.
There are a few effective methods for quitting smoking without resorting to nicotine replacement therapy. The best way is to quit cold turkey; however, this method takes a lot of willpower and often leads back to smoking.
Another effective method for quitting smoking is through a gradual reduction in the amount you smoke each day till you get used to not having a cigarette during your daily routine. This can take up to three months and sometimes even longer, but it is an effective way to quit smoking without nicotine replacement therapy.
There are many different ways to keep your cardiac health in check, but these six are just a few of the most effective methods. Make sure to talk to your doctor about which of these methods would work best for you and make an appointment today!