Are you ready to take the road to a healthy heart?
Cardiovascular disease (CVD), which includes heart disease and stroke, affects people of all ages and population groups, not just the elderly or men as is commonly believed. It currently causes 17.3 million deaths every year, making it the world’s number one killer.
As you get older your risk of CVD also rises and could continue to increase unless you take steps to reduce it. The majority of CVD is caused by risk factors that can be controlled, treated or modified.
Did you know?
- Each year, physical inactivity contributes to over three million preventable deaths.
- Unhealthy diets are linked to four of the world’s top ten leading risk factors causing death: high blood pressure, high blood glucose, overweight and obesity, and high cholesterol.
- Every day, 15,000 people die from the effects of tobacco and one in every two smokers will die of tobacco-related diseases. Second hand smoke kills more than 600,000 non-smokers every year, including children.
By reducing these risks you can reduce your chances of having a CVD and you can have a healthier lifestyle too!
One of the reasons for this blog is to help raise awareness of the services and support offered by Adult Social Care and other organisations with people in our city.
Here are just a few of them;
Here are a few other ways you can reduce the risks of a developing coronary heart disease:
Be physically active
- Even 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity five times a week reduces the risk of heart disease and stroke. Remember physical activity isn’t only sport. It is any bodily movement that uses energy. This can range from sports and exercise to other activities such as walking, doing household chores, gardening and dancing.
- It’s never too late to start exercising. Start with small amounts of physical activity and gradually increase duration, frequency and intensity over time. However, you need to talk to your doctor before starting on exercise programme to ensure it’s right for you.
- If you cannot do the recommended amounts of physical activity due to health conditions, try to be as physically active as your ability and conditions allow.
- If you are inactive or have some limitations you will have added health benefits if you move from the category of “no activity” to “some levels of activity”. If you do not meet the physical activity recommendations you should aim to increase duration, frequency and finally intensity as a target to achieving them.
Watch what you eat
- High dietary intakes of saturated fats (such as butter, lard, ghee, palm oil and coconut oil), trans-fats (the fat used in processed foods such as biscuits and cakes) and salt increase your risk of suffering from a heart attack or stroke, too much salt can lead to high blood pressure, too many fats can lead to clogged arteries. Be wary of processed foods which often contain high levels of salt. Total salt intake should be limited to less than 5 grams per day (about one teaspoon)
- Eat a balanced diet rich in fruit and vegetables, ageing can be associated with changes in lifestyle that affect the types of food eaten. Loneliness, boredom, depression and worrying about the future can lead some to neglect their diets. Unfortunately this can result in skipping meals and generally poor eating habits.
- Watch your weight, your body burns fewer calories as you get older. Excess weight causes your heart to work harder and increases the risk for heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and high cholesterol. Exercising regularly and easting smaller portions of nutrient-rich food may help you maintain a healthy weight.
We hope this helps you in looking after your heart.