A healthy lifestyle will make your heart healthier. Here are 10 things you can do to look after your heart;
Give up smoking!
If you're a smoker, quit. It's the single best thing you can do for your heart health. Smoking is one of the main causes of Cardiovascular Heart Disease CHD. A year after giving up, your risk of a heart attack falls to about half that of a smoker.
Getting – and staying – active can reduce your risk of developing heart disease. It can also be a great mood booster and stress buster. Do 150 minutes of exercise every week. One way to achieve this target is by doing 30 minutes of activity 5 days a week. Fit it in where you can, such as by cycling to work instead of driving.
Manage your weight!
Being overweight can increase your risk of heart disease. Stick to a healthy, balanced diet low in fat and sugar with plenty of fruit and vegetables, combined with regular physical activity.
Eat more fiber!
Eat plenty of fiber to help lower your risk of heart disease. Eat fibers such as wholemeal bread, bran, oats and wholegrain cereals, potatoes with their skins on, and plenty of fruit and veg.
Cut down on saturated fat!
Eating too many foods that are high in saturated fat can raise the level of cholesterol in your blood. This increases your risk of heart disease. Choose leaner cuts of meat and lower fat dairy products like 1% fat milk over full-fat (or whole) milk.
Get your 5 A Day
Eat at least 5 portions of a variety of fruit and vegetables a day. They're a good source of fiber, vitamins and minerals. There are lots of tasty ways to get your 5 A Day, like adding chopped fruit to cereal or including vegetables in your pasta sauces and curries.
Cut down on salt
To maintain healthy blood pressure, avoid using salt at the table and try adding less to your cooking. Once you get used to the taste of food without added salt, you can cut it out completely. Watch out for high salt levels in ready-made foods. Most of the salt we eat is already in the foods we buy.
You could eat fish at least twice a week, including a portion of oily fish. Fish such as pilchards, sardines and salmon are a source of omega-3 fats, which may help protect against heart disease.
*Always consult a doctor before any lifestyle changes