Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death in both men and women, but there are steps you can take today to keep your heart strong. Take a look at some of the best ways to improve cardiovascular health:
1. Know your numbers and family health history.
One of the most important things you can do to improve heart health is to understand your risk for heart disease and get regular health checks, especially if you have a family history of heart disease. Monitoring blood pressure and cholesterol levels is vital for catching a small problem before it becomes a bigger more serious issue.
2. Eat a heart-healthy diet.
At our Sulphur Springs pharmacy, we can help you begin a journey to better health with resources and tips for weight loss. Reach out, and we will help you however we can! Here are a few ways to improve cardiovascular health through your diet:
Foods to eat more of:
- Fruits & vegetables– you’ve probably heard the phrase “eat the rainbow” which refers to eating various fruits and vegetables, such as dark leafy greens, berries, apples, carrots, etc…
- Whole grains– opt for wheat bread, brown rice, and oats.
- Lean protein– chicken, turkey, and seafood are great sources of protein, especially salmon, which is high in Omega-3 fatty acids; beans and legumes are also fantastic!
- Non-tropical plant oils– cooking with avocado or olive oil is a great way to ensure you’re getting the right amount of healthy fats.
- Low-fat dairy & eggs– items such as cottage cheese, Greek yogurt, and even eggs are other protein-rich foods that make smart snacking options.
Foods to eat less of:
- Processed foods– chips and candy are fine occasionally, but refined carbohydrates shouldn’t take the place of key nutrients found in plant-based foods since they won’t keep you feeling full.
- Sugary drinks & alcohol– added sugar found in soda, energy drinks, and alcohol should be limited to maintain a heart-healthy diet.
- Excess salt– canned soups, sauces, and other convenience items usually contain high amounts of salt; look for low-sodium options or make your own if you can.
3. Stay physically active.
One of the best ways to improve cardiovascular health is to not sit down for too long! Being active as much as possible throughout the week is critical for maintaining a healthy weight which leads to a lower risk of heart disease. According to the American Heart Association, you should aim for 150 minutes of moderate activity each week. Walking is the easiest form of exercise that’s extremely beneficial for a healthy, happy heart!
4. Maintain healthy habits
If you currently do not smoke or vape, do not start now! And try to avoid secondhand smoke whenever possible, as it’s not only a risk factor for heart disease, but also stroke, cancer, and other conditions. If you currently smoke and want to get help to stop, we can help!
5. Recognize and manage stress.
Mental health and stress management are important factors linked to physical well-being. High stress levels can result in high blood pressure, a significant component of heart problems. Find support through friends and family to keep up with social interactions, and talk with your doctor about any symptoms of anxiety, depression, and chronic stress, and if supplements or other treatment options could be right for you.
6. Prioritize sleeping well.
When you aren’t getting enough sleep, you’ll feel sluggish and won’t want to be active and you may also tend to crave unhealthy snacks to get you through the day, which isn’t great for your weight and overall health. Prioritize getting at least 7 hours of sleep each night so you can wake up feeling refreshed and ready for the day ahead.
Now you know a few of the top ways to improve cardiovascular health! How can our local Texas pharmacy help you? We provide compounding services and support for weight loss, lifestyle changes, and overall wellness. Learn more about our compounding pharmacy and don’t hesitate to contact our kind, professional team!