At Homestead, we care about heart health and fighting heart disease. Over the last 25 years, our fundraising activities have raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for the American Heart Walk. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S., but there are lots of things you can do to help prevent it. American Heart Month is a great time to reflect on ways to build a healthier heart. Even with a family history, you could still prevent heart disease by improving your diet, blood pressure, cholesterol, weight, and smoking status. Here are some tips for a healthy heart!
Some of us try to steer clear of fat in our food, however, our bodies need fats in our diets. The key is to stick to healthy fats and avoid trans-fat. Avocados are full of healthy fats as well as other vitamins with lots of health benefits. Other foods containing healthy fats are cheese, dark chocolate, nuts, and full-fat yogurt.
Fiber lowers blood pressure and cholesterol, which is great news for heart health. Eating fiber can also help with weight loss since it is low in calories, fills you up, and keeps you feeling full longer. Some high fiber foods to consider including in your diet are berries, avocados, beans, apples, broccoli, carrots, bananas, and whole grain.
Taking in too much salt raises blood pressure, so try to reduce your salt intake. Eating whole, unprocessed foods as well as lots of fruits and veggies is a good way to start.
Bad dental habits are tied to higher heart risk, and research suggests that gum disease can raise your risk of heart disease. Be sure to see your dentist regularly and be sure to brush and floss!
Exercising is a very important way to be healthy and ward off heart disease, so try to get in some type of workout or activity most days. Additionally, staying seated for long stretches of time may increase heart disease risk. It’s important to move throughout the day so try to get up for walks or use a standing desk at work.
Mental health can have a significant impact on your physical health and your risk for heart disease and stroke. Improving your mental health can help reduce your risk for heart disease. Therapy is for everyone, and it is a wonderful tool for managing mental health. Be sure to exercise regularly, spend time with loved ones, and get enough sleep. Find some sort of hobby or activity that fulfils you. You can also practice relaxation techniques, meditation, and yoga.
Look at for the following signs to spot a stroke:
• F = Face Drooping
• A = Arm Weakness
• S = Speech Difficulty
• T = Time to call 911
If you think someone is having a heart attack or stroke, dial 911.
Heart health awareness and healthy habits are so important for preventing heart disease deaths. We hope these tips help you form habits that will boost your heart health. As always, Homestead will continue to support the American Heart Association and promote heart healthy habits.
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