A healthy heart is what it takes to keep the clock running smoothly for the long haul. Anything that burns up energy from walking, running, cycling, swimming etc. involves function of the heart and if you plan on living a long and active life, you need to always ensure that the heart is functioning well. In fact, various incidences of heart attack in young adults have drawn attention to how crucial your heart health is.
Eating right accompanied by regular exercising is the basic need for a stronger heart and a healthier body. Apart from following certain healthy heart diet tips, you should also be wary of and subside by certain lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking, working on the belly fat, stretching, trying to keep the blood pressure, sugar, cholesterol and triglycerides in check, keeping the inner child alive, enjoying life, avoiding stress and meditating. Make sure to schedule your full body check up from time to time and keep an eye on your vital numbers.
Heart health needs a little care of other body systems to
The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases states, “High blood glucose from diabetes can damage your blood vessels and the nerves that control your heart and blood vessels. Over time, this damage can lead to heart disease.” If you have diabetes, your chances of developing heart disease at a younger age are higher than people without diabetes. Those who have a family history of diabetes should get the HbA1c test, also known as glycated hemoglobin, which measures the average glucose levels. HbA1c normal range is between 4% to 5.6%; a higher range indicates excess of sugar in the body, meaning you are likely to develop diabetic problems. It is a vital part of full body check up too. Please note that the HbA1c test is a blood test and different from a regular finger pricking test.
As per some studies, optimum vitamin B12 levels and folic acid can help prevent heart disease by reducing the body’s levels of homocysteine. It is an amino acid homocysteine that has been shown to cause harm to the heart by raising clot formation in the blood vessels. Wondering when to get a vitamin B12 blood test? If one is feeling certain symptoms such as depression, fast heartbeat, poor memory or dementia, it may indicate vitamin B12 deficiency.
One should also go for a regular master health check up, including heart checkup that will help you keep your heart and overall body health in check and make recommendations for precautions and measures accordingly for a long, healthy and prosperous life.
Here are some dietary suggestions that will ensure the finely tuned machine is fueled right.
- Fresh fruits and vegetables:
Rich in essential minerals and vitamins, these are high in dietary fibre and low in calories. Berries, papaya, tomatoes, oranges, kale, spinach etc. help improve arterial function, and keep blood pressure in check. Higher the portion of fruits and vegetables in your diet, lower are the risks of heart diseases.
- Dark chocolates:
Interestingly yes, consumption of dark chocolates has been associated with lowering the risk of getting heart problems. Chocolates contain antioxidants like flavonoids that have been found to promote heart health as per some studies. Moderate intakes are advisable as chocolates are still high in calories and sugar.
- Almonds and Walnuts:
They contain various vitamins and minerals and are a great source of fibre and other micronutrients. Incorporating them in your diet, soaking them overnight or keeping them on your office desk, will help reduce bad cholesterol, keep the arteries clear and ultimately shield us from heart diseases.
- Olive oil:
With strong evidence based on various studies and experiments, olive oil is found to be an essential ingredient lowering the risk of developing heart problems. Thanks to its rich antioxidant properties, it has been proven to be a relief for inflammation as well as for treating hypertension. Sprinkle it on vegetables and enjoy the many benefits it offers.
- Green tea:
Among the many benefits it has, green tea may prevent cell damage, improve insulin sensitivity and reduce inflammation. Replacing your regular tea with green tea can be a first step to manage blood pressure and blood sugar.
- Protein enriched foods:
Fish, lean meat, poultry, dairy products, eggs etc. can be some good low fat protein sources to include in your diet. If you are a vegetarian, you can eat beans, peas, lentils etc. whereas non vegetarians can go for omega 3 fatty acids found in fishes like salmon, mackerel etc.
- Flaxseed oil:
mixing it with about anything, be it morning cereal, afternoon veggies or yoghurt or dessert muffins, will yield high antioxidant properties. Rich is omega 3, flaxseed oil contains both soluble and insoluble fibre.
Eating right is vital for the heart. Changing eating habits is often tough, but controlling the portion size of what goes inside the belly can be your way towards a healthy heart and incorporating these dietary tips in your schedule can be a great way to kick start. Ultimately the power to maintain and keep ourselves fit is in your hands; so make healthier choices and live a lifestyle that keeps your heart healthy and always smiling!