As the American Heart Foundation’s American Heart Month unfolds, Judson’s experts offer five top tips for keeping your ticker in tip-top condition.
Your heart is a hard-working muscle, pumping nutrients throughout your body about 60 times a minute, 24 hours a day, every day of your life. To keep that machine running, you need the proper fuel. In most cases, that means:
Thirty minutes of moderate activity, five days per week, is the “gold standard” for good health. But that 150 minutes doesn’t necessarily require a gym membership or costly equipment. The simplest way to get your daily exercise is by walking – at the mall, with the dog, or in the company of friends or family – and all it takes is a good pair of shoes.
Other options include swimming, cardio or aerobic classes. The key is to find something you enjoy, and stick with it. And remember: While 150 minutes a week should be your goal, anything is better than nothing.
If you are already following Steps #1 and #2, above, chances are you are well on your way to a healthy weight. Try these tips as well:
Young or old, rich or poor: Everyone experiences stress. It’s so ubiquitous, in fact, that some wellness experts consider it a hidden epidemic. As with weight management, eating nutritious foods and getting regular physical exercise can be very helpful. Here are a few other tips to help you relax:
Smoking, especially, is a hard habit to break; you can find tips and resources from the Centers for Disease Control here. Heavy use of alcohol is also problematic, especially as age-related changes affect the metabolism and make the effects of drinking more pronounced.
While for some people, any amount of alcohol consumption can be unwise, research has suggested that the flavonoids and other antioxidants in a daily glass of red wine might reduce heart disease risk. However the American Heart Association says there is no scientific proof that drinking wine or any other alcoholic beverage can replace conventional measures like managing your weight and eating nutritious foods.
We hope you find some value in these tips to keep your heart healthy! Have a safe and heart-healthy February!
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