Did you know that February is American Heart month, which means good tips are freely dispensed by a series of health agencies and online communities.
Let’s take a look at a few heart healthy tips from a variety of organizations all discussing American Heart Month.
1. Exercise – get at least 75 minutes a week, it can be done in chunks such as 10 minutes a day. Or 30 minutes most days of the week. Some activities which count toward the minute allotment above include walking, working on the lawn, doing dishes standing up, walking a moderate sized flight of stairs, playing tennis or any aerobic game, swimming, etc. The trick to sticking with it is to find something you enjoy doing.
2. Food – salt and fat are the biggest enemies to your heart. Reduce and cut back as much as you can, especially in meats. Look for labels that mention low-fat, no cholesterol, light, low sodium, reduced fat, etc and also monitor your sugar intake. A sweet tooth should be kept in check. Also remember food portions can make a big difference in your diet, keep them at normal levels and try not to over indulge. Your tummy and heart will be most grateful.
3. Prevention – getting regular tests and check ups at your local clinic can help at the very least keep you abreast of where you stand health wise. Having your blood pressure and cholesterol levels, along with keeping your weight in check are all things that you should be monitoring regularly. If you have diabetes or are at risk of getting it, keeping this under control is also key in possibly averting heart disease.
Heart attacks are the number one killer of women in the US, according to Dr. Joyce Oen-Hsiao, a Cardiologist at the Hospital of St. Raphael in New Haven. Watch the video below where Dr. Oen-Hsiao discusses how prevalent heart attacks are becoming, even among teens. Yes, teens!
***The information provided by this article is not a substitute for a face-to-face consultation with your physician, and should not be construed as individual medical advice.