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This month, we're putting the spotlight on heart disease.
Unfortunately, heart disease is still the leading cause of death in the United States, so it's important to do everything you can to reduce your risk.
We hope you find this information useful and that you'll take these tips to heart (pun intended).
Eat a Healthy Diet
Eating nutritious foods is good for your overall health, and that includes your heart. Be sure to include plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains in your diet, and limit your intake of saturated and trans fats. You should also watch your sodium intake, as too much salt can lead to high blood pressure.
Here are some heart-healthy foods you can pick up on your next grocery trip. Try incorporating them into meals you already make:
- Whole Grains
Make Movement a Habit
Exercise is another important part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Aerobic exercise is great for your heart, so aim for at least 30 minutes of activity most days of the week and incorporate strength training at least 1-2x a week.
If you're not used to exercising regularly, start off slow and gradually increase the intensity and duration of your workouts. Going full throttle from no movement to extreme levels of exercise will not only cause fast burnout and lead to stopping, but it can also be harmful to strain your body.
If it's overwhelming to begin a habit of movement, try our goal-setting tips for success here.
If you currently smoke cigarettes, quitting is one of the best things you can do for your heart (and your overall health). Did you know there are over 600 ingredients in a cigarette, 250 of which are known to be harmful? If you needed a reason to quit, that's a big one.
If you need help quitting, there are many resources available, such as nicotine replacement products, counseling, and support groups.
Just don't try to quit on your own—it's much harder than it sounds.
Control Your Cholesterol
There's good and bad cholesterol, but in the United States, almost 94 million people have bad cholesterol levels over 200mg/dL—that's a national health crisis.
Cholesterol is a type of fat found in your bloodstream, and too much of the "bad" kind can contribute to plaque buildup in your arteries. This plaque buildup can lead to atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), which increases your risk for heart attack and stroke.
You can control your cholesterol levels by eating a healthy diet (see tip #1) and exercising regularly (see tip #2). If these lifestyle changes aren't enough, medication may also be necessary.
Check Your Blood Pressure Routinely
High blood pressure is another major risk factor for heart disease, so it's important to keep it under control. You can have your blood pressure checked at most doctor's offices or clinics, or you can purchase a home blood pressure monitor if you prefer to check it regularly.
You can do many things to lower high blood pressure, such as eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, losing weight if necessary, reducing stress, and limiting alcohol consumption. Medication may also be needed in some cases.
Take a Multivitamin Supplement
Certain vitamins, like E, C, and CoQ10, are linked to supporting a healthy heart.
Creating a daily vitamin routine is one of the most affordable and easiest habits to adopt.
Not sure where to start? A quality multivitamin supplement is always a great idea, and try pairing it with a CoQ10 supplement as well.
Just remember that not all supplements are created equal. Our vitamins are non-GMO, vegan, sugar-free and free from the nine most common allergens. We make it EZ to get the nutrition you need with our fast-melting supplements.
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