You may be damaging your health and not even know. Find out how you’re ruining your heart and what to change to improve your health.
According to a study in the journal Circulation, heart disease is still the leading cause of death around the world. Furthermore, researchers believe that the lifestyle changes caused by the pandemic will keep heart disease at the top spot.
In dealing with COVID-19, many people have changed their habits and are adopting unhealthy behaviors that increase heart disease risk. Read about the following four habits that are leading to an increased risk of heart disease – and how to improve.
1. Avoiding Blood Pressure Checkups
In recent years, the American Heart Association (AHA) lowered the blood pressure guidelines, meaning you may have hypertension without knowing. Hypertension, or high blood pressure, weakens your blood vessel walls and increases your risk of a heart attack and stroke.
If you want to take care of it, start by getting your blood pressure checked and follow your doctor’s guidelines. Furthermore, if you really want to make a dent, start following a heart-healthy eating plan like the Mediterranean diet.
2. Ignoring Your Cholesterol Levels
Higher cholesterol levels are a natural part of aging, which is why it’s important you get your numbers checked regularly. Depending on your age and other risk factors, you may need to check them more often than others.
Regardless of what your current numbers are, you need to maintain healthy levels, which start with exercising and healthy eating. Moreover, in some cases, you may need to take medicine to keep your unhealthy cholesterol levels down.
3. Binging on Sugar
In addition to cholesterol, you need to watch your sugar intake – especially when it concerns added sugar. Found in sodas, cookies, and processed foods, added sugar plays a significant factor in developing heart disease.
To illustrate, by consuming too much added sugar, you can experience high blood pressure, weight gain, diabetes, inflammation, and more. The AHA recommends that adults limit their intake to 150 calories daily – about the amount available in one soda can.
4. Not Enough Exercise
While the pandemic may have made it harder to go to the gym, the fact is people don’t exercise enough. In fact, before COVID-19, only about 20% of Americans were getting enough exercise according to the AHA’s weekly exercise guidelines.
They recommend 150 minutes of moderate-intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise per week and strength training twice per week. If you have let your exercise routine go by the wayside, start by walking and gradually increase your efforts.
It’s easy to ignore your health while you’re doing fine – but not so easy when it starts affecting you. Take charge of your heart health by limiting the bad habits and adopting the ones that will make life healthier.
In addition, if you want an extra boost to your heart health, consider taking a supplement like L-arginine Plus. Give your heart the support it needs at this time and start exercising, eating better, and taking L-arginine Plus to boost your health.