The importance of knowing about heart disease prevention tips is significant. Learn helpful tips for prevention.
Every year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), at least 735,000 Americans experience a heart attack. This makes it a leading cause of death in the nation. Heart disease describes a range of malfunctions of the heart resulting in conditions such as arrhythmias, myocardial infarction, angina and strokes among others. Although family history and other medical conditions increase the risk for cardiovascular problems, it is still possible to mitigate these contributing factors with effective heart disease prevention strategies.
Some of the primary risk factors for heart disease includes high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity, diabetes, chronic alcohol consumption and genetic predisposition. Studies show approximately 37% of both men and women in the U.S. already have two or more of these risk factors. The good news is that an individualized heart disease prevention plan can mitigate some or all the risk factors that lead to heart disease. They may also be effective in preventing the development of heart disease in healthy individuals. Now, learn how to prevent heart disease with these useful tips.
Heart Disease Prevention Tips
- Keep tabs on your health by getting regular check-ups that can clue you in, sooner than later, to problems that may put you at risk of heart disease. That may mean require working with your health care team to manage any preexisting conditions that could increase your chances of developing heart disease. For instance; it is important to talk to your doctor about your blood pressure, glucose, calcium and cholesterol levels to better understand danger zones and ways you may be able to address issues quickly and effectively.
- Staff at the Mayo Clinic explain that blood pressure readings fall into four categories between normal to high blood pressure. If your blood pressure is not normal it is important to work with your doctor to bring it under control in order to reduce your chances of developing heart disease. If it falls into a normal range consistently, you can prevent heart disease through continued vigilance and a healthy lifestyle.
- CDC studies indicate that people with high cholesterol are at greater risk for heart disease. Some medical experts suggest healthy total cholesterol numbers should be less than 200 with triglycerides under 130. For people with diabetes or kidney disease however, those numbers should be even lower.
- Glucose or Blood Sugar numbers are evaluated after an overnight fast. Ask to be tested if your doctor does not suggest it and follow up with the results. A healthy glucose number is below 100. Be sure to get an A1C test if it is over. An A1C test outcome between 5.7 to 6.4 is a pre-diabetic range. A1C numbers that is 6.5 or greater is indicative of a diabetic condition.
- Additionally, a calcium test can tell your doctor if plaque is building up in your arteries which may also put you at risk of heart disease.
- Start cutting back on salt. The amount of salt recommended by the American Heart Association for everyone has been reduced from 2,300 to is 1,500 mg or less daily. This equates to approximately two-thirds of a teaspoon. Salt is recognized by the medical community as a contributor to heart disease. Cutting back on salt will necessitate reading labels to determine salt content in prepackaged food items. It is also important to take into consideration the amount of salt that may be added to food when it is prepared by others.
- Eat foods that support a healthy heart. The American Heart Association (AHA) offers specific guidelines that can help anyone to design a heart disease prevention diet. These instructions include increasing fiber, fruits and vegetables and reducing saturated fat, calories and portion sizes. The AHA also suggest finding innovative ways to add healthy fiber to your diet such as flaxseed which has also been shown to lower cholesterol levels. Since weight management is important to the process of preventing heart disease, a nutritionally dense diet that reduce fat and calorie intake will be instrumental in helping to achieve and maintain a healthy weight.
- Establishing a regular exercise routine is recognized as one of the most important steps anyone can take to maintain optimum health and prevent heart disease. According to general and interventional cardiologist from the Langone Medical Center and New York University, Sohah N. Iqbal, MD; “Even after a heart attack patients should get back on an exercise program that is guided by their doctor.”
- Stop smoking or avoid exposure to second hand smoke. Studies show smoking by itself is a high-risk factor for heart disease and when combined with other risk factors such as diabetes it can exacerbate the potential for heart disease because it…
- raises blood pressure,
- Increase heart rate
- decrease good cholesterol (HDL),
- diminish pulmonary function,
- increase blood clotting activity
- damage the cells that line the arteries
- put others people’s health at risk.
Studies show the risk of a heart attack, in most individuals, is usually reduced to that of a non-smoker in as little as five years after quitting this habit.
Ultimately, the path to heart disease is based on a number of variables that are unique to each individual- learning how to prevent heart disease is possible and helpful. However, the scope of these heart disease prevention suggestions provides the basic framework that can help most people to personalize an effective heart disease prevention plan. Consult with your physician about your specific needs.