This month is National Heart Health Month. It seems that right now there is a day or a month dedicated to just about everything, from umbrellas to wine drinking. However, heart health month is something that you should certainly pay attention to. As the rates of heart disease climb, accounting for almost 1 in 4 deaths in the United States per year, there has never been a better time or reason to start focusing on your hearts health.
Let’s start by going through a few statistics, in case you weren’t aware.
- One in every four deaths in the United States is the result of heart disease.
- Heart disease is also the leading cause of death around the world
- Every single year, around 735,000 Americans suffer from a heart attack, either their first or their second
These numbers are alarming, but they don’t mean that all hope is lost. For many people, heart disease is something that can be avoided, but in order to do so, you may need to make some lifestyle changes. Things like:
Controlling blood pressure and taking steps to better manage stress
Practicing regular meditation can help give your heart a break, and according to Jocelyn Nadua, Care Coordinator at C-Care Health Services, potassium and fiber can help to lower blood pressure and prevent strokes,
Dr Ron Goedeke, GP and surgeon at Appearance Medicine suggests 15 min of daily aerobic exercise aiming for a pulse of 120 to 140 beats/min and minimum strength training twice/week.
Eating right & managing your cholesterol
Emily Hardman, Accredited Practising Dietitian (APD) tells us “Eating well is essential for a healthy heart. Fruit and vegetables provide a wonderful source of fibre, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, and eating an adequate amount of these can be protective against heart disease. A diet rich in healthy unsaturated fats such as olive oil, avocado, and nuts and seeds, is associated with reduced LDL (bad) cholesterol and increased HDL (healthy) cholesterol, helping to keep the heart healthy. ”
Additionally, you can also have a heart health screening, to learn if you are at risk and what specific actions you may need to take to prevent it.
So, celebrate this National Heart Health Month by taking the first steps to reducing your risk of heart disease. Whether it’s going in for a screening or getting back into an exercising routine, make sure that you take the time this month to work towards better health.