Right now, the covid virus is the #1 health anxiety in the land, but keeping your heart in good shape should also be paramount.
Heart disease is still the #1 cause of death in the country, according to the CDC, with 655,381 passing away because of it every year.
And since covid can lead to heart problems, it makes even more sense to ensure your ticker is working correctly. Even if you seem healthy now, you still need to work to avoid a heart attack in the next 20 or even 10 years.
If we you have an underlying risk factors that you don’t realize, that can go into a real disease in just 10 to 15 years. If you at least understand these numbers, it will give a better framework for finding your risk factors.
1 — Moderate Your Stress
Stress hormones can lead to an increase in cortisol which also lead to an increase in visceral fat (fat stored around your organs) which directly harms heart health.
Stress can boost your adrenaline, a hormone that triggers your “fight or flight” mechanism—and increases your blood pressure and heart rate. Keeping those numbers increased creates an inflammatory response in your body, which in turn causes heart issues, including heart attacks and heart disease.
2 — Forget Your Phone
Cardiologists—like many of us—are stuck to their phones. While they must be available for work, they also understand the value in going dark.
And they are right: Recent research by the American Psychological Association discovered that “constant checkers”—or people who are always staring at email or social media on their call phones—are more stressed than people who don’t have that habit.
“Take some time away from your smart devices over the weekend,” says Nieca Goldberg, MD, a cardiologist and AHA expert. “Decide on a weekend to take a break.”
3 — Don’t Ignore Toxins
“Chemicals inside pesticides, processed foods, alcohol, nicotine and sweeteners can all strain your cardiovascular system,” says Shae Leonard, a functional medicine expert. “This leads to oxidative stress that can cause vessel damage, buildup, and heart disease.”
4 — Pay Attention to Your Blood Sugar
“Greater blood sugar is where it begins. And it leads to oxidative harm to your arteries, endothelial problems, hypertension, and then plague and cholesterol buildup and blocks,” says Leonard. “Get lab work on a regular basis and seek out optimal levels not just ‘within normal limits.'”
Author: Scott Dowdy