7 ways to promote a healthy heart

Heart disease is the #1 cause of death worldwide but 80% of these deaths are preventable by managing risk factors and changing your lifestyle. Heart disease is caused by the buildup of fatty plaque in your arteries, called atherosclerosis. As a result, blood cannot flow through the arteries to the organs as well, which can damage your heart and blood vessels.

Below is a list of 7 ways to promote a healthy heart.

1. Exercise. This will decrease several risk factors for heart disease including blood pressure, extra weight, and cholesterol levels. Seniors should aim for at least 2 and a half hours of moderate aerobic exercise per week.

2. Quit smoking. Nicotine can reduce the size of blood vessels, making you four times as likely to have a heart attack. Second-hand exposure to smoking increases the risk of developing heart disease by 25% to 30%.

3. Manage your stress. Your arteries can become damaged due to high levels of stress, which causes inflammation and swelling in your body. Talking to a mental health professional, increasing physical activity, and practicing meditation are some ways to reduce stress.

4. Eat more fruits and vegetables. Consuming a variety of fruits and vegetables is linked to healthier hearts and a lower risk of heart disease.

5. Get enough sleep. This can reduce the risk of heart attack, high blood pressure, and obesity. Research has shown that people who get fewer than six hours of sleep per night are more likely to have a heart attack.

6. Limit your alcohol consumption. Excessive consumption of alcohol has been associated with heart failure, high blood pressure, and cardiomyopathy, which is a disease that makes it harder for your heart to pump blood to the rest of the body.

7. Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight increases your risk of heart disease. A way to determine if your weight is healthy is to calculate your body mass index (BMI). This calculation uses your weight and height to measure body fat.

The Boom Health app is a one-stop app that allows you to book and manage all your care needs. Check it out on the App Store or Google Play Store.