Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death in the United States, accounting for more than one-third of all U.S. deaths each year. While this may not come as a surprise to most Americans, many people do not realize that CVD can be prevented by adopting healthy lifestyle habits that promote cardiac wellness.Say’s Dr John Strobeck, the following are eight key lifestyle changes that can help you reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke:
Stress is a major risk factor for heart disease. It can lead to high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat and other problems that increase your risk of heart attack or stroke. For this reason, it’s important to take time out from daily stressors and relax whenever possible.
Stress reduction techniques include meditation and yoga; other options include listening to music or taking walks outdoors in nature (which has been shown to reduce anxiety).
Get enough sleep.
Getting enough sleep is an important part of overall health, and it can help you prevent heart disease. Studies show that people who get more than 7 hours of sleep have lower blood pressure than those who get less than 6 hours.
Sleep deprivation can also increase your risk for heart disease by increasing levels of stress hormones such as cortisol, which can lead to inflammation in your arteries and make them more prone to damage from free radicals (unstable molecules that cause oxidative stress). Sleep loss also makes you more likely to develop diabetes or obesity–both risk factors for cardiovascular problems.
Quit smoking and drinking.
Quit smoking and drinking.
Smoking and drinking are two habits that can lead to a variety of health problems, including heart disease. Smoking is known to raise blood pressure and cause blood clots, while heavy drinking can damage the liver and kidneys over time. If you have one or both of these habits, talk with your doctor about how best to kick them for good so that you can live a longer life without the worry of developing serious health issues such as heart disease or stroke later on down the road
As a cardiologist, I’m often asked if there’s a magic pill that can prevent heart disease. The answer is no–and yes! The best way to keep your ticker healthy is through lifestyle changes like eating well and exercising regularly.
One of the most effective ways to improve your health is by exercising at least 30 minutes per day at least five days per week. If you’re not used to being physically active, try starting with 10 minutes per day; then gradually increase your time over several weeks until you reach 30 minutes or more each session (or do something intense like running). When it comes down to it though: any movement counts! Even taking the stairs instead of an elevator can make a difference in how quickly blood flows through our bodies–and ultimately helps lower blood pressure levels which reduces stress on our hearts (and prevents strokes).
Manage your diabetes, if you have it.
If you have diabetes, the best thing you can do for your heart is to manage it. By controlling your blood sugar levels and getting regular exercise, you can prevent or delay many of the complications associated with diabetes. If you don’t already have diabetes, avoid becoming a statistic by making sure that any family history of this condition is addressed as soon as possible.
We hope that you’ve found these tips helpful. Remember, it’s never too late to start making changes in your life. If you’re interested in learning more about cardiac wellness or want help finding resources near you, visit our website at drjohnstrobeck.com.