Heart Health

Why not encourage your clients to think about CV health this Valentine’s Day?

Source: Heart Foundation

A healthy heart is about enjoying a healthy lifestyle & making this a part of your everyday life. It is also about taking positive steps to reduce risk factors.

Everyone can do something to help prevent heart disease, including people who already have heart disease or who have had a heart event. The good news is that if you lead a healthy lifestyle, as outlined below, you can reduce your risk of developing heart disease.

The best ways to reduce the risk of developing heart disease, and to help prevent it getting worse if it already exists is to reduce or remove the risk factors over which we have some control. Being male, increasing age and having a family history of early death from heart disease are also risk factors for developing heart disease, but are much more difficult to control or change!

1. Be smokefree Smoking reduces the amount of oxygen in your blood and damages the artery walls. Stopping smoking is the single most important thing you can do to reduce your risk of coronary heart disease.

2. Enjoy healthy eating Cholesterol and fat contribute to the deposits which build up in the artery walls and cause disease.

You can help lower your blood cholesterol level and limit further artery clogging by reducing the amount of saturated fat you eat. Saturated fat is found in fatty meats, full cream dairy products, butter, most fried take-away foods and commercially baked products.

3. Be physically active The body is designed to move, and regular activity is good for the heart, no matter what your age or physical condition is. Being active is also a great way to have fun. Physical activity can also help control other risk factors such as high blood pressure and being overweight. The Heart Foundation recommends that people include 30 minutes or more of physical activity on most, if not all days of the week, for health benefits.

4. Control blood pressure High blood pressure can strain your heart and speed up the process of coronary heart disease. Have regular blood pressure checks. If your blood pressure is high, reduce salt intake, limit alcohol to two drinks or less daily and follow your doctor’s advice. Long-term medication may be required to manage high blood pressure.

5. Maintain a healthy weight Being overweight and carrying too much weight around the waist are risk factors for coronary heart disease and diabetes. Healthy eating and being physically active assists weight loss. Chat to your doctor and physic about steps you might take.

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