Understanding how to take care of your heart is the key to maintaining good health and extending your life. So, how can we improve heart health in our daily lives, or take control of our current heart condition? This article will take you through 6 key points to establish cardiovascular-friendly diet, exercise and living habits
1.Learn about heart health
Health status includes the impact of personal diet, exercise, lifestyle habits and family genetics on the heart. For example, if you have a smoking habit, have a wine stall every three days, and exercise frequently on a monthly basis, your chances of suffering from heart disease are definitely higher than most people.
There are many factors that may increase the risk of heart disease. For example, men have less high-density lipoprotein (HDL, commonly known as good cholesterol) than women. However, women who have already faced menopause may also suffer from estrogen secretion. Decrease, increasing the risk of arteriosclerosis. Other heart disease risks include the following:
- Type 2 diabetes
- Familial hypercholesterolemia
- Drinking too much
- Lack of exercise
- Diet high in saturated fat and trans fat
Once you review these risk factors that may lead to heart disease, you can know whether you are at high risk for heart disease and where you can get your heart care. Of course, don’t forget to have regular heart health check-ups. Pay attention to whether there are abnormalities in cholesterol, blood sugar and other indices, which can help you find out early whether you have heart or cardiovascular problems.
2.A heart-healthy diet
Not only are the causes of cardiovascular disease closely related to diet, having healthy eating habits also means that you can obtain balanced nutrition. These nutrients play a decisive role in the normal operation of human immunity and functions.
Taking the prevention of heart disease as an example, reducing the intake of saturated fat and trans fat is the key to reducing the concentration of low-density lipoprotein (LDL, commonly known as bad cholesterol), which is closely related to heart disease. Because there is less bad cholesterol in the body, When fatty plaque accumulates, the risk of atherosclerosis is reduced.
There are many diets suitable for heart health, such as the Mediterranean diet, the DESH diet or the New Nordic diet, which you may have heard of. For example, the Mediterranean diet emphasizes the use of olive oil for cooking. The monounsaturated fat it contains helps reduce the risk of heart disease. Cholesterol levels. In terms of meat choices, these diets tend to choose fish instead of red meats such as beef. Fish can provide rich polyunsaturated fatty acids, which can help reduce total cholesterol levels in the body.
In addition, not taking in too much sodium, eating more fruits and vegetables, and choosing non-refined starchy foods can all help prevent the occurrence of cardiovascular disease.
3.Exercise keeps your heart strong
Regular, uninterrupted beating of the heart is a necessary condition for maintaining life. Perhaps because of this, we take it too much for granted. However, the heart is not the only one that needs to beat continuously. The human body also needs to exercise. Exercise can bring the following benefits:
- Exercise burns calories faster, helps you maintain a healthy weight and avoid obesity.
- Exercise can help you maintain or improve muscle strength and slow down the loss of muscle with age due to aging.
- Exercise can also promote the secretion of endorphins in the brain and help you feel happy.
How much exercise is enough? The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week, such as jogging, cycling, rhythm dancing, or walking, and at least 2 Do strength training every day.
Everything is difficult at the beginning. If you don’t have the habit of exercising, you may feel that you can’t meet the requirements after reading this. However, you can take the following methods to help yourself establish the habit of regular exercise:
- Reduce difficulty
Assuming that 150 minutes of exercise time are evenly distributed from Monday to Friday, you should exercise for at least 30 minutes every day. We might as well start with 15 minutes a day to develop the habit of regular exercise, continue for 1 to 2 weeks until we adapt to the amount of exercise, and then gradually increase it.
- Find exercise partners
When you are alone, you will inevitably want to be lazy sometimes. At this time, having a good exercise partner to supervise you and encourage you can make it easier for you to persist. While you become healthier by exercising, you are also allowing your friends who exercise with you to reap the same benefits. Can there be a better deal than connecting friends and promoting good health?
4.Quit smoking to protect cardiovascular health
I believe it goes without saying that the harm cigarettes do to the human body is well known to everyone. However, some people still believe that long-term smoking will not cause any health problems. The root of this idea comes from their friends or family members. In fact, whether you will get lung cancer, oral cancer, heart disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), etc. due to smoking is a matter of probability. But why should we bet our luck on this kind of thing? Even if we win, it will not do anything to the body. In terms of benefits?
According to the Ministry of Health and Welfare, smoking cessation for one year can reduce the risk of coronary heart disease (also known as ischemic heart disease, coronary heart disease) by 50%. Quitting smoking not only protects yourself, but also protects those around you, because second-hand smoke is no less harmful than smokers.
Quitting smoking depends on the smoker’s determination and perseverance. The support of relatives and friends may increase the success rate of quitting smoking, but if you have tried to quit smoking but failed, or think that there is no way to get rid of the addiction on your own,
5.Take medication as directed
If you are already taking heart disease medication, such as blood pressure medication, blood lipid-lowering medication, or diabetes medication, please follow your doctor’s instructions. Never stop taking medicine just because you think your symptoms have improved and you feel more comfortable. In order to avoid not only failing to achieve the desired therapeutic effect, it may even cause more serious side effects and aggravate the condition.
If you have stopped taking medication, please explain it in detail to your doctor at your next visit so that the doctor can understand your condition.
6.Reduce intake of alcohol and sugary drinks
Refined sugars are the number one enemy of maintaining a healthy weight. In particular, Taiwan’s handheld drink market is booming. Many people feel uncomfortable if they don’t drink one cup a day. It can be said that they are addicted to sugar. Although “sugar” is indispensable for the normal functioning of the human body, “refined sugar” is not beneficial to the body. People who regularly drink sugary drinks are not only more likely to gain weight and have an increased risk of heart disease, diabetes, and kidney disease, they are also more likely to develop tooth decay than the average person.
Quit sugary drinks
- If you simply don’t like the taste of water, maybe you can consider putting some lemon slices in the water to make the water less boring.
- Choose drinks that are good for your health, such as fresh milk and sugar-free soy milk, instead of other sugary drinks.
- Develop the habit of drinking more water. Don’t let yourself be constantly thirsty, which can reduce the desire to drink.
- Step by step, you can first change from drinking it every day to drinking it once every three days. Change the sweetness of the hand-cranked drink from half sugar to slightly sugar. Don’t push yourself too hard all at once.
Lack of “acetaldehyde dehydrogenase”
Lack of this enzyme coupled with excessive drinking can cause acetaldehyde to cause damage to the myocardium and may lead to alcoholic cardiomyopathy. In addition, long-term drinking may also increase the risk of increased blood pressure and triglycerides.
So what’s the best way to avoid over drinking it? It is recommended that men should not exceed 2 cans of beer per day and women should not exceed 1 can of beer (or equivalent amount of alcohol).