Show Your Heart Some Love This Month
February is American Heart Month: a time to focus on our heart health and take steps to protect ourselves from heart disease. Heart disease is the leading cause of death globally, and it’s important to understand the risks and how to prevent it.
Here are some tips to help you take care of your heart health:
- Maintain a healthy diet. A diet that is high in fruit, vegetables, whole grains and lean protein can help lower your risk of heart disease. Avoid processed and sugary foods, and try to limit your intake of saturated and trans fats.
- Get regular exercise. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise, such as brisk walking, most days of the week. Exercise can help lower blood pressure, improve cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease.
- Don’t smoke. Smoking damages your blood vessels and increases your risk of heart disease. If you smoke, quitting is one of the best things you can do for your heart health.
- Monitor your blood pressure. High blood pressure puts extra strain on your heart and blood vessels, increasing the risk of heart attack and stroke. Have your blood pressure checked regularly and take steps to lower it if it is high.
- Manage stress. Chronic stress can lead to high blood pressure and increase the risk of heart disease. Find healthy ways to manage stress, such as through exercise, meditation or talking to a therapist.
- Get enough sleep. Lack of sleep can increase the risk of heart disease. Aim for seven to nine hours of sleep per night to help keep your heart healthy.
By following these tips, you can take care of your heart and reduce your risk of heart disease. Remember to talk to your primary care provider about your heart health and any steps you can take to protect it. Happy American Heart Month!
“’Reclaim Your Rhythm’ During American Heart Month,” American Heart Association, heart.org, accessed Jan. 1, 2023.