Are You A Heart Attack Looking For A Place To Happen?
Between stress, a poor diet and giving up sleep time to other pursuits, we have become a society of unhealthy people who appear to be looking for the fastest way to have a heart attack. While it is true that we cannot always avoid stress or get more sleep due to the job and personal demands placed on all of us, we can take some simple steps to avoid the risk of having a heart attack and maintain good heart health so that we live longer and much healthier lives.
When it comes to heart health the number one cause of many heart and circulation problems is smoking. This risk factor exists because the chemicals in tobacco can and will damage your heart muscle, as well as cause blockages in your circulatory system leading to atherosclerosis (or narrowing of the arteries). Experts tell us that no amount of smoking is healthy. Even smokeless tobacco or tobacco products advertised with low tar or less nicotine represent a grave risk to your personal health.
Women smokers are at a greater risk of having a heart attack than men. If birth control pills are used in conjunction with smoking, the risk of a woman having a heart attack nearly doubles. If that same woman performs daily tasks which require a lot of physical effort, the danger of having a heart attack doubles again! Most woman have less warning signs or time available to take action than men. Rosie O’Donnell recently tweeted about having a heart attack after helping someone get in or out of a car on a warm day. That physical exertion combined with whatever other risk factors she had to make her feel suddenly fatigued and ill. Fortunately, she was able to seek medical assistance in time to save her life.
A poor diet combined with high blood cholesterol levels can create almost as great a risk to your heart health as smoking. That combination adds to the risk of developing Hypertension (persistent high blood pressure) and other health problems which can damage the heart. People who consume more than average daily amounts of alcohol, red meat, dairy products, coconut and palm oils (found in many snack foods), deep fried fast foods, bakery products, packaged snacks and regular margarine are greatly at risk when it comes to ultimately having a heart attack or developing heart disease. By contrast, people who consume average daily amounts of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low fat dairy products, beans and low fat sources of protein can significantly reduce their risk of having a heart attack or developing heart disease.
One of the best ways to avoid a heart attack is not just by not smoking or by making better dietary choices, but by performing some type of sensible exercise for thirty minutes each day. Walking, swimming or biking for that amount of time can actually improve heart health and greatly reduce the chances of having a heart attack or developing heart disease. You should always consult your doctor before starting any exercise program and follow their recommendations. You can also use the information provided by your physician to consult a fitness training and dietary consultant for exercise and lifestyle adjustment suggestions.
You may not be able to successfully limit the amount of stress in your life, but you can take the edge off of it or even reduce it by using some popular alternative methods of stress reduction. Horseback riding was recently singled out as an excellent stress relieving activity. Chiropractic treatments and associated lifestyle counseling has also been shown to help reduce stress and improve overall personal health. People who see Chiropractors also report that they have less problems getting a good night’s sleep. When it comes to sleep, do not try to replace that good night’s sleep with power naps. The two are not related and while power naps may or may not improve your ability to concentrate on any particular task, they will not help you to improve your overall physical health. Being heart healthy means being willing to make positive changes that will help you to lead a long and healthier life.