The health of our hearts is essential to every function of our daily lives. There is perhaps no more important aspect to maintaining our overall health and wellbeing than taking care of our heart. Due to the prevalence of heart disease and other cardiovascular conditions, it’s critical to do what you can to promote the best-possible heart health. While it may seem challenging to change certain habits, there are actually several simple steps you can take to treat your heart right and keep it beating strong for many years to come.

Tips to Improve Your Heart HealthEat a Heart-Healthy Diet

Your diets plays a major role in keeping your heart healthy and vital. In addition to prioritizing heart-healthy foods like almonds, berries, fatty fish like salmon, tomatoes, and dark chocolate, there are several foods that we would recommend cutting down on. Trans fats found in packaged baked goods, snacks foods, margarines, and fried fast foods can be bad for your heart. Salt can also increase your risk of heart disease by raising your blood pressure.

Maintain Good Dental Hygiene

What’s happening in your mouth may seem unrelated to the condition of your heart, but it’s true that there is a connection between dental hygiene and heart health. Since those with periodontal (gum) disease often have an increased risk of heart disease, flossing daily is especially important.

Exercise Regularly

Exercise is always highly recommended. But that doesn’t mean you have to be running marathons to keep your heart healthy. We recommend aiming for at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise daily. This can include any physical activity or sport that gets you moving and increases your heart rate. Try not to spend too much time on any given day sitting down. We recommend walking (possibly on a treadmill if possible) while talking on the phone or watching TV to help break up extended periods of sitting.

Avoid Smoking & Other Forms of Nicotine

Smoking and consuming other forms of nicotine can take a toll on your heart and your blood vessels. Secondhand smoke can be just as damaging to your health. According to data collected by the American Heart Association, exposure to secondhand smoke contributes to nearly 34,000 heart disease deaths and 7,300 lung cancer deaths annually in the US. If you’re a smoker, we recommend doing what you can to quit for the benefit of yourself and those around you.

Following these helpful steps can help you take a proactive approach to your heart health. Hopefully they will help make you feel better in the short term and guide you to many heart-healthy years to come. For more information or if you would like to schedule an appointment today, please contact Family Practice Center. You can follow along with us on Facebook and Twitter for additional health tips, news, photos, and more.