Ways to Get a Heart-Healthy Lifestyle - Olathe Chiropractic

Ways to Get a Heart-Healthy Lifestyle

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 610,000 deaths in the United States happen each year due to heart disease. This condition can happen due to other chronic conditions, but many factors are due to lifestyle and unhealthy eating. If you have heart disease or heart problems, you can start to get a more heart-healthy lifestyle with these tips!

 

Heart Disease and Heart Health

Heart disease is not a term that describes only one condition. It is used to describe any condition that affects your heart. Often, the term “cardiovascular disease” is the same as heart disease. Your specific type of heart disease could deal with blood clots or bleeding issues, while another’s may be diseased vessels, valve issues or structural problems. Heart disease is different for everyone and it may or may not be severe for you. High blood pressure is even considered heart disease, as well as stroke, arrhythmia, congestive heart failure, cardiac arrest and many other heart issues.

 

As a whole, heart disease affects millions of Americans. At least 610,000 people in the United States die each year from heart disease. That accounts for 1 in 4 deaths in the U.S. Men are more likely to develop heart issues. Lifestyle plays a major role in your risk for developing problems with your heart. That is why you want heart-healthy habits to help you avoid heart problems so you can live a long life.

 

A chalkboard that has a heart drawn on it with heartbeat monitor lines. Inside the heart are nuts, avocados, veggies and other heart-healthy foods.

Foods that Help You Be Heart-Healthy

Diet is so important to avoiding most chronic conditions and even many diseases. How you eat will affect how your body runs, feels and even how long you live. Poor diets low in nutrients can lead to chronic conditions, mood changes, mental fog, digestive upsets and countless other issues. For example, eating a nutrient-poor diet can lead to chronic issues with fatigue, blood sugar fluctuation, low oxygen in your blood, a poor immune system, nerve degeneration, slow healing, and especially cardiovascular problems. These are only a few examples. So what do you do?

 

Make a goal to change at least 3 things in your current diet and work from there. Healthy bodies need at least 6 essential nutrients to work properly each day. Those nutrients include protein, carbohydrates, fat (healthy fat), water, vitamins and minerals. Your body can’t make vitamins and minerals on its own, meaning you need to get them from heart-healthy eating. Some great foods that can help you work towards a heart-healthy lifestyle include:

  • Vegetables (especially the leafy green kind) packed with nutrients to protect your arteries
  • Whole grains, which help reduce cholesterol
  • Avocados, which have monounsaturated fats that reduce cholesterol
  • Berries, which have antioxidants to help reduce inflammation and oxidative stress
  • Fish oil and fish, that have omega-3 fatty acids that benefit the heart
  • Beans and legumes, which contain resistant starches to reduce cholesterol
  • Dark chocolate (and similar snacks) that contain antioxidants
  • Nuts (almonds and walnuts) and seeds, that are packed with nutrients and omega-3s
  • Garlic, which helps reduce blood pressure over time
  • Olive oil, which is packed with antioxidants

 

An middle-aged couple that is outside together smiling. Their attire looks like they have been exercising.

Your Exercise Matters

Do you exercise? If your answer to that question is “no”, then you might want to rethink your decision to skip exercise. Studies show that people who exercise can actually be increasing their lifespan by up to 4-5 years. The reverse is true in people that don’t exercise. Simply choosing to not get up and move may be cutting months and years off of your life. The body slows down, circulation moves slower, fewer areas of the body get nutrient-rich blood and oxygen, and many other processes change when you don’t exercise.

 

If you want to be more heart-healthy, get up and move. The American Heart Association recommends that the average person get at least (notice that we said “at least”) 150 minutes of exercise each week to stay healthy. That is 30 minutes a day for 5 days a week, and you can break it up throughout the day if you need to. Harvard Health studies found that even people with heart issues can exercise too. Many with heart disease may stop when they start to feel angina with exercise. However, their studies found that exercise will improve that angina the more they do it. This is because coronary blockages starve areas of the heart of blood it needs to thrive. Exercise will increase that starvation, and the body will start to create new “molecular and metabolic pathways” that will help the heart get blood to areas that need it. Those new pathways is what makes it easier to start running again if you took a minute to walk.

 

If you struggle to exercise, get professional help. Stretching and yoga can even be exercise and we can show you how to do these properly with chronic conditions, ailments and heart issues. We can also meet your rehabilitative needs in our office and help counsel you through your treatments and exercise so you reach your 2019 goals.

 

Heart-Healthy Habits

Did you know that you are more at-risk for heart disease if you are overweight? Diabetes, a poor diet, physical inactivity and alcohol use all raise your risk for heart problems. Many people don’t know how to manage their diets effectively for great overall health. We don’t expect you to fully transform your lifestyle into one that is heart-healthy without a bit of help. Our professionals are trained to help patients with an extensive range of chronic conditions, diseases and heart problems.

 

We have nutritional assessments, diet counseling, weight loss services, chiropractic and rehabilitative therapies and more to help you get started. Professional help with allow you to change your health and your life quicker than you could on your own. To learn more about our health services and how you can be more heart-healthy, call Olathe Chiropractic today at (913) 732-0087!

 

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