Heart disease is a disorder of the blood vessels that lead to your heart and once you contract it, you will have it for the rest of your life. That is why it is so important to take steps to stop it before it starts. With a few simple changes to your lifestyle, you can help prevent heart disease. You will not only reduce the risk of a heart attack but also the risk of suffering stroke and diabetes.
- Avoid Tobacco – Smoke from cigarettes, cigars and pipes is as bad for the heart and arteries as it is for the lungs. Remember, second-hand smoke is also toxic, so avoid it whenever possible.
- Be Active – Exercise and physical activity are essential to fighting heart disease and other chronic matters. Any amount of activity is better than none; at least 30 minutes a day is best.
- Aim for a Healthy Weight – Carrying extra weight, especially around the belly, strains the heart and can increase your risk of diabetes.
- Healthy Diet – Add fruits and vegetables, whole grains, unsaturated fat, good protein (from beans, nuts, fish and poultry), and herbs and spices to your diet. Eliminate processed foods, salt, rapidly digested carbohydrates (from white bread, white rice, potatoes, etc.) red meat, soda and sugar-sweetened beverages.
- Drink Alcohol in Moderation – If you drink alcohol, limit your intake. One to two drinks a day for men and no more than one a day for women.