The new year has begun, and so has another opportunity to get your health in tip-top shape. Starting a new year with a new goal and vision can help keep you driven for success! Focusing on your heart health is a great way to increase your overall health by adding exercise and removing unhealthy habits and foods from your diet. By following a few easy guidelines, you can truly commit to changing your lifestyle habits, providing you with a future of health and wellness! Let’s get to the heart of the matter and make better decisions in 2021!
Tips to Getting Heart Healthy
Eating More Whole Foods
Though diet trends tend to change from year to year on what is the “healthiest,” nutritionists have consistently proven that consuming more whole foods, or foods in their most natural form, contributes to improving health and preventing heart problems. When a food has been over processed, unhealthier additives go into your body when it is consumed. Here are a few healthier options for you to consider:
- Whole grains (Breads, rice, pastas, etc.)
- Organic fruits and vegetables
- Skinless chicken breast instead of breaded and fried chicken nuggets
- Fresh fruit in place of processed sugars
Eliminate/Track Risk Factors
There are many risk factors of heart disease that we should all be aware of in order to best take care of ourselves. In fact, according to the CDC, about half of all Americans have at least 1 key risk factor for heart disease! Monitoring and eliminating these risk factors can exponentially decrease the chance of developing heart-related issues. Health conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, and obesity increase the likelihood of heart disease significantly, so getting treatment for these conditions can improve your heart and overall healthiness. Secondly, eliminating behaviors such as smoking and alcohol abuse can also make your heart healthier over time.
Adding exercise to your daily routine may seem like a struggle, but there are many other (and more fun) ways to get moving that aren’t just walking. Whether you live a sedentary lifestyle, or you are a regular exerciser, these are a few fun activities that can increase your mobility, which leads to weight loss, lower cholesterol, and better heart health!
- Martial Arts
More Water, Less Sweet Beverages
It can be tempting to indulge in those sweet, carbonated beverages through out the day for a little pick-me-up but replacing those drinks with water can make a drastic difference in your health. It may not directly cause heart disease on its own but drinking these “empty calories” have no health benefits and can increase your blood sugar and cholesterol over time. Adding water in place of those drinks will lower your caloric intake, your sugar intake, and give you more energy by hydrating your body!
Healthy Food > Fast Food
It may seem easier to pick up food for a meal on-the-go. While it may save you time, over time, it will start affecting your health. Usually, fast food means over-processed food! All those extra calories and chemicals will, over time, contribute to high blood pressure, obesity, and high cholesterol. To combat this, try planning your meals from home for the week at once. This way, you can plan your meals that saves you time during the week, and you can control the portion size and calorie count of each meal to help keep you on track!
Though the studies are not complete, nutritionists and cardiologists are starting to see high levels of stress affect patient’s heart health. Stress can wreak havoc on your body, causing headaches, mood swings, and killing any energy you may have, so it is no surprise that it can put stress and strain on your heart as well. Having a plan for stress management can be crucial in preventing stress-related cardiac events.
2020 is behind us, and 2021 is upon us! Make this year your healthiest year yet by adopting some or all of these practices to boost your heart health and overall wellness! Contact CT Cardio and Get Heart Healthy today.