Heart Diseases and Disorders are among the most commonly known illnesses. Unless you live in a completely different world, you would already have an idea about the common risk factors for heart diseases. These risk aspects are obvious such as high blood pressure, obesity (overweight), smoking, diabetes, physical inactivity and high cholesterol levels. All of these factors play a major role in increasing the risk of heart diseases. But, now thanks to the new emerging risk factors, especially unhealthy lifestyle habits, you are harming your heart health.
Heart Disease and Disorders are the leading causes of death worldwide and every year approximately 17.9 million people die from various heart diseases. Researchers have linked an unhealthy diet and lifestyle with an increased risk of developing various heart diseases. These issues are:
- Pregnancy Difficulties
- Gum disease
- Sleeping disorders
- Chronic Inflammatory conditions
- Mental Health Issues
- Unhealthy eating habits
Surprisingly people are not fully aware of these emerging risk factors and are putting their lives in danger. However, once you have a good idea regarding your risk of having heart disease, you can easily devise smart strategies for yourself that can help you in reducing the higher risk.
Before we dig deeper into this issue, you need to know that there is no particular age to take care of your heart.
You are never too young and never too old to take your heart health seriously.
By opting for smart lifestyle choices can not only help you in preventing various heart diseases but it’ll pay off for the rest of your life as well.
Poor diet, unhealthy sleeping patterns, lack of exercise and unhealthy habits are sure to take a serious toll on your health throughout your life. To keep your heart strong and healthy at any age, simple steps can be beneficial for you. Here is what you need to do as per your age.
Heart Health for All Age Groups
Your age shouldn’t be a blocker for your heart health. It might seem cliches but everyone at any age can benefit from mild exercise and a healthy nutritious diet.
Make a Nutritious Diet Plan– You become what you eat. Opt for foods that are low in sodium and saturated fats. Limit the consumption of artificial sweeteners and beverages. Add fish, fibre-rich whole grains, fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts and legumes as they are part of a healthy diet. If you want to eat meat then make sure to select the lean cuts of meat.
Physical Activity- Mild exercises can do wonders! You need to remain physically active. You can opt for brisk walking, walking, jogging or a combination of these every week to keep you active for a strong heart. Muscle-strengthening activities especially for the major muscles (back, chest, abdomen, arms, shoulder, hips and legs) is necessary. As for the children, they should do physical activity or exercise for at least 60 minutes daily.
Most importantly, you should learn about the various signs and symptoms of heart attack and stroke. Not everyone can feel numbness or even chest pain when they suffer from a heart attack. Besides, men and women show different heart disease symptoms.
Simple Steps for Healthy Heart
During your 20’s
Smart health choices at an early age can reduce your health-related issues. The Do’s and Don’ts in your 20’s can highlight how your health will be going to affect your life.
Get a regular Checkup – Yes, healthy people do need doctors. You need to consult your doctor and talk about your lifestyle habits and diet. Screening and regular checking of heart rate, body mass index, blood sugar, cholesterol and blood pressure should be done. You need it more if you have any underlying health conditions such as diabetes.
Exercise- Staying physically active from a young age helps you in keeping up with this routine as you age.
Avoid Smoking- Smoking is injurious to health. Smokers have higher chances of developing heart disease. They also have a higher chance of developing ear infections, weak immune system, lung diseases, pregnancy complications etc. But, surprisingly, those who don’t smoke but are exposed to smoke even are 30% more likely to develop lung cancer or heart disease. So, it’s time to quit smoking for yourself and others.
During Your 30’s
During your 30’s a person is juggling between career and family and many adults during the 30’s do not have time to think about their heart health. Other things are important but not at the cost of health so here are some smart ways to keep a balance between heart health and life.
Know your Family Tree- Knowing your family history or genetics is important. If heart disease runs in your family then your risk of having it increases. For this very reason, you need to eat healthily, avoid smoking, exercise regularly, maintain a healthy body weight and get a regular medical check-up.
Manage your Stress- You need to opt for stress management activities. Stress increases your blood pressure and heart rate that may damage your arteries of the heart. Try deep breathing exercises and do such activities which make you happy.
Healthy Heart for Healthy Family- Make this a family affair and encourage your kids in it too. Instead of spending time on screen the whole day, try to go on a walk. Adopt a healthy activity and invite your kids to help you with it.
During your 40’s
If you haven’t cared about your health until your 40’s, No Need to Worry! You can still tackle this issue by these three simple steps.
Maintain Your Weight– Obesity increases the risk of heart disease. Thus, losing weight through diet and workout can be effective in minimizing your risk of heart diseases. In your 40’s your metabolism works differently so watch out and don’t eat fat-gaining foods a lot. Do exercise to maintain your weight.
Check Your Blood Sugar Level– Screen and keep a check on your blood pressure and sugar level in your blood. This becomes more necessary if you are diabetic as it increases the risk of heart disease.
Snoring- Don’t take snoring at this age lightly. It can be a sign of ‘sleep apnea’ which can be a contributing factor for high blood pressure, stroke or heart disease.
During Your 50’s
By this age, you already have grey hair and wrinkles. Old age is starting to get you. Ageing itself impacts your heart. So you need to be extra careful about yourself and take these steps
Healthy Nutritious Diet– It is easy to skip a healthy diet at this age. You must add plenty of vegetables and fruits, fish, grains, seeds, legumes and nuts in your diet. Avoid eating too much meat.
Keep a check on yourself. By this age, you may have been diagnosed with high blood pressure, diabetes and high cholesterol levels which increases the risk of heart disease and disorder.
Learn the warning signs and symptoms of heart disease. The symptoms are different for both men and women.
And Finally in Your 60’s
As you age, the risk of health issues is increased. Your cholesterol level, heart diseases and blood pressure tend to increase. Keeping a proper check on your health condition and adopting healthy eating habits along with moderate exercise will help you live longer. In particular, during your 60’s or 60+ age you need to particularly watch out for your weight as the older you get, your body has to put more effort into doing daily life work. You need to learn about the signs and symptoms of heart health issues. Early diagnosis and treatment can help you in saving your life and avoid any serious disability.
Last but not least in your 60’s it is recommended to take an “Ankle-Brachial Index Test”. It is a part of a physical test that helps to diagnose PAD or “Peripheral Artery Disease”, it is a lesser-known heart-related disease that can be life-threatening if left untreated.
The understanding of health issues is important but how you modify your lifestyle according to it would decide your health.