Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States. According to the CDC, one person dies from a heart condition approximately every thirty seconds.¹ Thus, it is important that you maintain healthy habits to ensure your heart maintains its function. Keep reading for some tips you can include in your daily routine to ensure optimal heart health.
- Be aware of your health status. It is important to schedule yearly appointments with your primary care provider to monitor different aspects of your heart health such as blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Also, it is important to recall your family history of heart disease because this may increase your risk of developing such conditions. These first steps are necessary to developing a care plan appropriate for you.
- Moderate changes to your diet. Breathe– we are not telling you to go vegan! Instead of making drastic changes that you won’t be able to sustain, try making subtle changes. For example, use less salt when cooking, bake your meat instead of frying it, and slowly reduce your fast food intake per week.
- Increase your physical activity. Similarly to diet, you do not need to make drastic changes or buy a gym membership. Increasing your physical activity may look like walking instead of driving, or taking the stairs instead of the elevator.
- Quit smoking. Smoking is a risk factor for many diseases and heart health is no exception. Quitting smoking is easier said than done, but there are many resources through New York City to help you get on track. In the meantime, challenge yourself to reduce the number of cigarettes you smoke in a day, and also reduce the frequency of vaping or smoking hookah.
- Reduce alcohol intake. Alcohol can have negative impacts on your health if consumed in excess. Drink in moderation. For women, it is recommended to have no more than 1 drink per day.²
- Manage stress. You may not be able to control the uncertainties of life, but you can control how you respond to the stressors. For some, this may include leaning into spirituality and for others it may include meditation and yoga, or tapping into hobbies like listening to music and reading a book.
To conclude, improving your heart health can be possible with baby steps. Schedule an appointment with us to know your heart status and receive personalized tips for your heart health journey.
- CDC. Heart Disease Facts | cdc.gov. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Published May 15, 2023. Accessed January 28, 2024. https://www.cdc.gov/heartdisease/facts.htm
- Facts about moderate drinking | CDC. Published July 25, 2022. Accessed January 28, 2024. https://www.cdc.gov/alcohol/fact-sheets/moderate-drinking.htm