Top 5 Tips to a Healthy Heart

Lifestyle choices to avoid a heart attack without medication

What is a heart attack?

A heart attack is when the small arteries by your heart have plaque buildup, also known as atherosclerosis, a blood clot may occur. The blood clot could then get stuck in one of your coronary arteries and block blood flow to your heat. The lack of blood to the heart then causes part of it to die and as a result you might too.

1) Don’t Smoke or use tobacco

The chemicals from smoking and using tobacco can lead to the narrowing of blood vessels. It also makes your blood vessels more susceptible to plaque buildup and it lowers the amount of oxygen in your blood so your heart has to work harder to supply your body with oxygen, this then causes high blood pressure.

2) Exercise at least 30 minutes daily

30-60 minutes of daily exercise can decrease your risk of getting other heart diseases that put stress on your heart such as hypertension, high cholesterol and diabetes. Regular exercise also reduces stress which is thought to be a contributing factor to heart disease. The exercise should be moderately vigorous but every little thing counts toward your daily total, such as taking the stairs or walking your dog.

3) Eat a healthy diet

Nutritious food can prevent high blood pressure, high cholesterol and obesity all of which are contributing factors to heart attack. A heart healthy diet would entail fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, certain types of fish and low-fat dairy products. An unhealthy diet would have large quantities of saturated fats and trans fat which both raise cholesterol levels. Examples of saturated fat are red meat and dairy products. Some sources of trans fat are deep fried fast food, bakery products, packaged snack foods, margarine and crackers.

4) Maintain a healthy weight

Extra weight can lead to conditions that make the heart more vulnerable to suffering a heart attack such as hypertension, high cholesterol, and diabetes. To find out if you are overweight, take a BMI test. A BMI test considers your height and weight and then tells you if you have a high percentage of body fat. If you have a BMI number of over 25 you most likely have some of the above conditions and are therefore at greater risk for a heart attack.

5) Get a regular health checkup

With regular appointments to the doctor you can have tests done to find out if you have some conditions that make you more susceptible to a heart attack such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol or even obesity. When you know your numbers for these conditions you know whether or not you need to take action to reduce your risk of heart disease.

Julie

Biology 30s

Ms. schewczyk

Dakota collegiate