15 October, 2018
You might have often heard or read about how someone young in the 40s suddenly collapsed and died of a heart attack. News like this is becoming more and more common these days. Perhaps, one of the contributors for this is the high-stress lifestyle most of us follow these days. We start the day early, get through polluting traffic and irritating traffic jams to get to work, handle stressful work using computers for hours on end with almost no exercise, eat late and even eat more of junk food, get back home, watch TV and then sleep late. We sleep less, we eat wrong, and we don’t relax or spend quality time with family. As such, our lifestyle is wrong, and somewhere it takes a toll on our body. Apart from a sedentary lifestyle, diseases like diabetes and hypertension, smoking and alcohol consumption, obesity, and poor heart performance due to aging are the other factors that can cause heart issues.
A recent newspaper report put the heart disease-related deaths in the US went down by 41%, while in India during the same period, it went up by 34%. Heart diseases accounted for 15 to 20% of all deaths in India, and that, is not a good sign; in fact, it is worrying. It means that we are not taking of our hearts, the way we should. So, apart from creating awareness, there is a need also to know what can be done to avoid such issues happening out of the blue.
Past the age of 50, it is better to go for regular checkups, at least once a year. If there is an issue with the heart, or you have some other issues and factors contributing to the chances of heart disease or heart attack, the doctor may suggest checkups, more frequently. Follow the doctor’s advice and do not skip these checkups thinking, it is ok and that it won’t matter. Sometimes, these checkups may save your life. There are many instances wherein people who had gone for a checkup, ended up getting diagnosed with a block, etc. which was attended to immediately.
Maintain a regular exercise schedule
A regular exercise schedule can improve your heart health by leaps and bounds. Exercise will also help you maintain the body weight and avoid being obese, which is one of the contributing factors to heart issues. Walking for at least 10 to 15 minutes daily, if nothing else can also help your heart. This improves blood circulation and also keeps the blood flow going in the veins and arteries, thus improving your heart health. Hence, make sure not to skip your exercise other than for ant emergencies, as that can help you live longer and healthier.
When a person drinks sufficient water in a day and keeps the body hydrated, it helps the health of your heart. When you do not drink enough water, the body is dehydrated, and blood thickens, and that puts a strain on the heart as well. Hence, drinking water along with many other benefits can also help keep heart diseases at bay.
Maintain a healthy diet
A good healthy diet can help keep oneself healthy, and that also includes the heart. A balanced diet that is rich in fiber, low in carbs, contains essential minerals and vitamins and is having a low-fat content is the most suitable for your heart, especially as you age. Salt and sugar intake needs to be brought down, as also the processed and packed foods. Including lots of fresh fruits and veggies can help a lot as well.
Give up smoking
Smoking is one of the contributing factors towards heart diseases, and this is a well known and well-established fact. Chances of smokers having angina, a kind of heart attack are very high, and hence, since overall smoking is harmful to health, it is better to give up on this.
Overall, if one can manage to keep oneself happy, stress-free and calm, then one remains healthy and can avoid hypertension, another contributing factor to heart diseases. Hence, concentrating on staying happy can also help one to keep heart diseases at bay.
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