Physical inactivity causes six per cent of deaths globally. Risk factors, such as obesity, diabetes and lack of physical activity, present in childhood can greatly increase the likelihood a child will develop heart disease as an adult.
Even 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity five times per week reduces the risk of heart disease and stroke.
- Physical activity does not need to be exercise! Other activities such as doing household chores count-spend the day gardening or cleaning to help with the cleaning!
- Set realistic goals-building up levels of activity gradually will seem less overwhelming than trying to run a marathon on the first go
- Investigate physical activity schemes on your area-some cities have cycle or run to work schemes which might help you fit exercises into your busy schedule
Eat a heart-healthy diet
More and more people are turning to processed foods that are often high in sugar, salt, saturated or trans fats. Unhealthy diets are linked to four of the world's top 10 leading risk factors causing death.
A heart-healthy diet which is rich in fruit & vegetables helps prevent heart disease and stroke.
It can seem hard to stop eating the foods you love. Instead of avoiding sweet foods completely, swap chocolate or other sweets for alternatives treats such as mango or other fruits
- Make healthy food exciting for children-choose colorful foods and involve them in the cooking
- Limit salt intake to less than five grams per day (about one teaspoon)
- Consider portion sizes: use smaller plates, and ensure larger portions of fruit and vegetables than meat or carbohydrates
Say "no" to tobacco
One in every two smokers will die of tobacco-related diseases, unfortunately, more and more children and teenagers are taking up smoking. Secondhand smoke kills more than 600,000 nonsmokers every year including children. In infants, second and smoke can cause sudden death.
Quitting smoking and avoiding secondhand smoke reduces risk of heart disease and stroke.
- It is crucial to ban smoking in your home to protect your families future
- Educate children on the dangers of tobacco use, to help them to choose not to smoke themselves
- If you are finding it hard to stop smoking, visit your healthcare professional for advice or ask your employer for support as your workplace may provide smoking cessation services
Know your numbers
By taking the steps above, you and your family can reduce the burden of heart disease and stroke wherever you are in the world, but it is important to keep a regular check on your heart health.
Visit a healthcare professional who can measure your blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose levels, weight, and body mass index(BMI)
- Once you know your overall CVD risk, you can develop a specific plan of action to improve your heart health. Make this action plan clearly visible in your home as a reminder! Your healthcare professional can also advise on appropriate treatment options where necessary
- Embrace it: Do not suppress your worries, acknowledge & deal with worries to solve them soon so that they don't trouble you all day. Take control of your feelings & emotions. Try to adapt a problem solving attitude.
- Learn to be in the present instead of being too anxious & predictable about future. Stop worrying to prepare yourself to handle a potential situation, instead, focus on present.
- Change the self talks: Take out time to become aware of the inner voice & change the negative thoughts into positive ones. Remain calm & happy.
- Try to concentrate on breathing & consciously tensing & relaxing muscle in your body. With this relaxation technique the anxiety dissipates.
- Talk about your worries and concerns to supportive family members or friends. This can also be a great way to combat anxiety.
- Consider medication from right doctors for severe anxiety issues.
- Keep positive attitude
- Accept that there are events that you cannot control
- If you feel overwhelmed then take a peaceful walk
- Do things that are pleasurable like reading or gardening
- Avoid smoking & alcohol in stress
- Get enough rest & sleep
- Seek out support from friends & family
- Manage your time, set your watch so that you can plan each event thoughtfully for the day
- Eat healthy food & fruits
- Eat food with more fiber like, whole grain cereals, breads, rice etc.
- Get 30min physical activity each day
- Stay at healthy weight
- Learn to cope with stress
- Ask help if you feel down
- Check your blood glucose regularly
- Report any drastic changes in your eye sight
- Avoid smoking & alcohol
- Consume less animal fat
- Eat fish for Omega 3 fatty acid
- Avoid eating too much butter, cheese, oil in food etc
- Prefer olive oil in food
- Exercise regularly
- Avoid alcohol & tobacco
- Eat high fiber food
Food & Supplements for healthy heart
Supplements: Fiber, Fish Oil, Sterols and Stanols, CoQ10-ubiquinol, Garlic, Green Tea.
Foods: Fresh Herbs, Black Beans, Salmon, Tuna for Omega-3, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Walnuts, Almonds, Green Soyabeen, Tofu, Sweet Potatoes, Oranges, Swiss Chard(Leafy Vegetable), Carrots, Barley, Oatmeal, Flaxseed, Low-Fat Yogurt, Foods Fortified With Sterols, Coffee, Cayenne Chili Pepper, Kosher Salt, Cherries, Blueberries