Let’s admit it – trying to draw the line between living your best life and prioritizing heart health can often be a challenge.
The foods you’d rather eat, and the things you’d rather do are often in sharp contrast with the things that promote a healthy heart. All the things that give us the most pleasure – fast foods, excessive alcohol, keeping the body in a constant state of rest, etc. are some of the habits that weaken the heart.
What if I told you you could live your best life and also maintain good heart health? The key is to adopt a sustainable approach instead of waking up one day and having to drastically alter your lifestyle to buy you a few more years. Here’s how.
Explore Healthy but Tasty Recipes
Healthy eating is one of the very common ways to promote heart health. Constantly bingeing on fast foods, and foods high in cholesterol seems like fun but it kills you slowly.
The notion that healthy foods are boring only rings true when you limit your options.
You can eat healthy meals and still enjoy them. The key is to explore various recipes and mix things up to offer you variety.
Spending time on the couch is so much fun – it can be even addictive when you have nowhere to go. It however does not help in the long run.
Your heart needs a certain amount of activity daily to stay healthy. You can achieve this through cardio or resistance exercises. It doesn’t matter your age – exercising regularly is a must, if you wish to maintain a healthy heart.
Go for a run, hit the gym, or explore some home workouts often.
Working out isn’t a luxury — It is a necessity you must incorporate into your daily routine.
Indulge in Alcohol Occasionally
It can be hard to say no to liquor, especially when we are among our peers. Alcohol in itself isn’t a bad substance – it is the overindulgence that makes it harmful to the heart.
Making a conscious effort to drink only on occasions is a good way to ensure that you are not denying yourself the pleasure of drinking, nor are you setting your heart up for failure.
And by occasions, we don’t mean every weekend.
Have a Routine Blood Pressure Check
The only thing that kills you is what you don’t know. According to the World Health Organization, cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death globally. These include hypertension/high blood pressure. It usually has few to no symptoms and kills suddenly.
The only way to know the condition of your heart is to have routine blood pressure checks. Knowing your status early can inform your lifestyle choices. Don’t be caught off guard.
Take responsibility and know where you stand.
Minimize Stress by Prioritizing Rest
Stress comes in many forms – physical stress, mental stress, etc. The rule is simple; when you are tired, rest.
Being under constant stress doesn’t only affect the body and mind but also the heart. As much as it needs activity to stay healthy, it also requires rest.
Aim for 7-8 hours of sleep each night. Relax the mind by meditating, practicing yoga, etc. By all means, chase the bag, but don’t push the body beyond its limits. Always remember, you can’t cheat nature.
When it comes to matters of the heart (we’re referring to the organ itself), there are no compromises. You must practice a healthy but sustainable lifestyle every day to ensure its health.