The American Heart Association (AHA) has championed for heart health since its inception in 1964 and created American Heart Month to raise awareness about cardiovascular disease which impacts more than 17.3 million people annually.
Though heredity can play a role in heart disease, there are numerous preventative steps you can take to lead a healthier lifestyle and reduce your risks.
At East Ridge at Cutler Bay, the lifestyle contributes to a heart-healthy lifestyle with wonderful walking trails, a state-of-the-art supervised fitness center, a full range of fitness classes and a restaurant serving delicious meals every day. The Home Health Department also has a Vitality Counselor, Daphne Dunn, who assists residents in reaching wellness goals while Suzana Delgado is the wellness coordinator.
Here are few suggestions for heart health:
Eat Your Way to Better Health
- Include fruits and vegetables in your diet;
- Consume fish (preferably oily fish such as salmon, sardine and tuna) at least twice per week;
- Include nuts, legumes and seeds in your meal plan;
- Avoid saturated fats, trans fat and excessive salt.
Physical Exercise Does the Heart Good
- AHA recommends at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity at least 5 days per week for a total of 150 minutes;
- A brisk 30 minute walk each day improves cholesterol levels and lowers risk for coronary disease;
- Whenever possible, avoid sitting for more than 10 minutes at a time.
Adopt a Healthier Lifestyle
- Getting too little or too much sleep can negatively impact cardiovascular health;
- Stress has a direct correlation to heart disease. De-stressing techniques such as meditation or yoga are advised;
- Maintain a healthy weight as excess weight can cause the heart to work harder;
- If you’re a smoker, quit. Smoking is one of the top controllable risk factors for cardiovascular disease;
- Though red wine has been found to reduce blood clot formation and help prevent artery damage, experts still recommend moderate alcohol use.