Wednesday, September 14th, 2011

Learn About Heart Friendly Lifestyle!

heartfriendlyIn the last 15 years, experts claim that heart disease has increased by 15% in young Indians. Naturally, such rise in numbers owes an explanation and concern.
Guardian Health Chronicle comes to rescue with ‘10-step- heart friendly plan’ which is quite ‘do-able’. Read to learn the basics for leading a heart friendly lifestyle.

1. Be smart with food- Surge of sugar and cholesterol after a heavy meal increases the workload on heart and also increases the deposition of cholesterol in blood vessels. So eating meals on time is good for heart. Better, you should eat six small meals in day to keep the glucose level at an even keel. And yes, stay away from feasting and fasting, as they can stress heart.

2. Drink a glass of water before your meals. The reason is simple. It is an effective way to eat less, which means you can keep your weight in check.

3. Measure your waist. The BMI is a good, but imperfect guide. Muscle weighs more than fat, for instance, and women and men who are very muscular and physically fit can have high BMIs without added health risks. Because of that, waist circumference also is a useful tool to measure how much abdominal fat you have

  • Men are considered overweight if their waist measurement is greater than 40 inches (101.6 centimeters, or cm)
  • Women are overweight if their waist measurement is greater than 35 inches (88.9 cm)

4. Learn yoga. Yoga helps you stretch your limbs which keep them supple and flexible. A study recently published in the American Journal of Physiology, has found that stretching exercises as in Yoga, don’t just help with stiff muscles and joints but prevents stiff arteries as well, which means less clog and lower risk of heart-related disease

5. Get eight hours of shut eye. Why? Too little sleep may increase your risk of developing high blood pressure, according to a report in Hypertension, a journal of the American Heart Association, earlier this year. Around one quarter of people aged from 32 to 59 who slept for five or fewer hours a night developed hypertension, compared with 12% of those who got seven or eight hours.

6. Walk when you talk. Regular brisk walking for 30-40 minutes daily for at least 5 days a week is the best exercise for heart. Does it sound too much? Break it in two parts to get a healthy heart because your heart is a muscle and like all muscles it can benefit with some amount of moderate activity.

7. Quit smoking. Inhaling tobacco smoke causes several immediate responses within the heart and its blood vessels. Within one minute of starting to smoke, the heart rate begins to rise. Carbon monoxide in tobacco smoke exerts a negative effect on the heart by reducing the blood’s ability to carry oxygen.

8. Laugh every day. Laughter dissolves distressing emotions. You can’t feel anxious, angry, or sad when you’re laughing. Moreover humour shifts perspective and you look at things in less threatening light. If you find it difficult to loosen up in front of others, try watching hilarious movies and comedies. It’s a good way to get the daily dose of chuckles.

9. How about forgiving people? Well, it’s quite a difficult task, but in the ultimate analysis you only forgive yourself when you forgive others. Pent up hurt, guilt and regrets are not good for your heart. Come on, give your ticker one more chance. We all are fallible and let’s accept it.

10. Get a pet home. Friends need not be human. Heart patients who develop a close relationship with a dog, cat or any other pet animal recover significantly faster and live longer. This is because by providing unconditional affection and love, pets reduce stress levels in their owners.

Incorporate these steps for a steady heartbeat today.

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Category: Heart Health
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