Heart disease is a leading cause of death among men and women in the United States. Nearly one in four deaths is caused by cardiac problems. That means more than 600,000 people die each year from cardiac problems. Every year, nearly 735,000 Americans suffer a heart attack. That means that a person has a heart attack every 34 seconds. There are things you can do to protect your heart and your health. If you have problems and have a cardiologist they may recommend you see an expert in cardiac electrophysiology who can run a series of tests on your heart to determine what your risk level is. There are also some things you can do at home to protect your health.
Tips to Keeping Your Heart Healthy and Happy:
- Lose weight. This is one of the best things you can do for your health. Most Americans do not get enough exercise. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends people get at least 60 minutes of vigorous exercise every day. You do not have to have the time to get the full 60 minutes at a stretch. Work some exercise into your routine throughout the day. Walk up the stairs rather than take the elevator. Take small steps to move more and you can do wonders for your heart health. Before you start a big workout routine, talk to your doctor. You may also want to look into talking to a personal trainer to tailor a workout plan to you and your needs. If you have seen a heart specialist or have cardiac electrophysiology tests done, make sure any plans your make include checking with your doctors to make sure you do not over do it.
- Eat healthier foods. Work to lower your bad cholesterol and raise your good cholesterol. The American Heart Association recommends keeping your levels of LDL cholesterol at under 100. If you cannot get it to that point, try for 130 or less. Experts recommend adding more fiber, fresh fruits and vegetables to your diet. The good news about these foods is they can add nutrients and flavor while reducing the amount of calories and fat your consume. Adding whole grains and foods rich in omega 3 oils can also help.
- Limit your sodium intake. You can make very testy foods that are not covered in salt. If you love salty foods, start cutting back. Start by cutting back on how much salt you use when you cook. When you add the salt later, you end up using less but tasting it more.
- If you smoke, quit. Most of us know that smoking is a huge contributor to heart disease. You do not have to be a cardiology expert to know this. If you have not started smoking, do not start. Be careful about being around people who are smoking. Second hand smoke can be almost as bad for you as smoking yourself. The good news is that when you stop smoking your body starts to work to undo the damage you have done to yourself by smoking.
- Keep your blood pressure in check. Many people have hypertension. There are ways to deal with this issue with better diets and getting more exercise. If those measures are not effective for you, you and your doctor should talk about adding medication to your routine.
- Keep an eye on your blood sugar. With the rise or obesity in America, there has also been a jump in the number of people suffering from Diabetes or whose blood sugar levels have them at a “pre-Diabetic” stage. Have yearly physicals and get your AIC glucose levels checked. Again, diet and exercise can be your two best tools to fend off Diabetes, heart disease and hypertension. Talk to your doctor about having cardiac electrophysiology tests run to see where your heart is before you begin any new diet or workout regimen.
Heart disease is a serious problem for many Americans. It is important to start thinking about protecting your heart before you need cardiac electrophysiology tests. There are many things you can do to help your heart get and stay healthy. Talk to your doctor before you make changes but you can lead a healthier life.
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