Heart disease is the biggest killer of men & women in the US today but it can be preventable with a few easy lifestyle changes. That’s why we decided to share our top 10 tips for heart health with you.
10 easy tips to improve your heart health
- Cook a heart healthy meal. Nutritional experts recommend following a diet plan similar to the Mediterranean diet that focuses on fresh fruit, vegetables, whole grains, fish, chicken and Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Studies show that people who follow this kind of diet have a lower incidence of heart disease than those on a low fat diet.
- Eat less table salt. This type of salt loses most of its minerals during the refining process and can cause increased blood pressure and weight gain. Make the switch to Papa Vince Sea Salt that is hand harvested from the waters of the Mediterranean, contains up to 80 health promoting trace minerals and won’t negatively affect your blood pressure.
- Spend less time sitting and more time moving! Start exercising & get the whole family involved! The American Heart Association recommends getting at least 30 minutes of physical activity per day to reduce your risk of heart disease.
- Try to decrease the stress in your life by practicing some relaxation techniques. Find out what works for you, it could be yoga, meditation or spending time outdoors.
- Stop smoking. There are many programs now that can help to break the habit. It may be difficult at first but it won’t be long until you start to enjoy a better quality of life.
- Cut back on alcohol consumption but don’t be afraid to add a little red wine to your diet. Having a glass of red with a meal can lower the risk of heart disease due to an anti-oxidant rich substance called resveratrol which has been gaining attention for its health benefits. Just stay within the healthy guidelines of a 5 oz glass per day for women and no more than 2 glasses for men.
- Sleep. Getting enough restorative sleep can be key to optimum health. This includes putting your cell phone to sleep in another room and switching off an hour before bed time.
- Get your own furry friend. A pet provides companionship and can reduce stress. A dog is always willing to go for a walk and can help you to get active by becoming your daily workout partner, she never comes up with an excuse!
- Laugh more. It’s Biblical, we’re told in the book of Proverbs that “A merry heart does good like medicine.” This is ancient advice that has passed the test of time and is easy to follow. Get together with family, friends or companions and enjoy life together. You can always join a club, take up a new activity and find some like-minded people to share life with, it’s possible to make friends during every stage of life.
- Lose weight. Follow all the steps above and you should find that you naturally start to lose weight. Being overweight is linked with several risk factors for heart disease. Consuming the correct amount of calories, eating nutrient dense foods instead of empty calories from junk food should make a difference to your weight, health and your self image.
For some heart healthy recipes make sure you check out: