What You Need to Know About Heart Health
While February might be heart month, it’s never a bad time to talk about heart health. Each year more than 800,000 people die of heart disease. That’s a big number, especially considering that many of those deaths could be avoided with long-term lifestyle changes.
It’s also important to educate people about the early signs of heart disease to ensure that people know when to get help for their heart needs. While it’s easy to talk about all the things you could do, here are some important details for you to learn more about heart health and how you can design a healthy lifestyle that promotes a healthy heart.
Men and Women Experience Heart Attack Symptoms Differently
This is critical information to understand. Many people have heart attacks and don’t even realize it because they are looking for the wrong symptoms. In general, men are more likely to experience sudden pain or discomfort in their chest. They may get pain in one or both of their arms. Men might find themselves out of breath in situations that they normally can easily breathe in. Additionally, they may have some dizzy spells, nausea, and potential vomiting.
Women on the other hand may get pain in the upper abdomen, their jaw, their neck, or down one or both of their arms. They can also experience dizziness and vomiting during a heart attack. Women may mistake the cold sweat that they experience as another symptom of menopause instead of seeing it as a potential heart attack warning. Men and women with different known heart conditions will likely be prescribed medications like Sotalol HCL.
Exercise is an Essential Component for Heart Health
People with healthy hearts exercise regularly. This doesn’t mean that you need to be a gym rat. It simply means that you are staying active throughout the week, taking brisk walks, and maybe even adding in some resistance training. You can get all of this through normal activities and outdoor sports. People enjoy golf, tennis, and even swimming as part of their exercise regimen. These sports and many more help keep people’s cardiovascular health in top shape.
It’s Important to Eat a Diet Low in Inflammatory Foods
The role of inflammation and heart disease is just now being discovered and studied. People with heart disease often have higher levels of overall inflammation in their bodies. While there are medications to reduce acute inflammation, chronic inflammation is better addressed by eating foods that reduce inflammation naturally.
Some of the best foods to decrease inflammation include adding fatty fish, dark green leafy vegetables, nuts, and avocados to your diet. Processed sugar and heavily processed grains are among the most inflammatory foods you can eat. By reducing your intake of the items that increase inflammation and adding in more foods to decrease inflammation, you will improve your health markers significantly in that arena.
Laughter is Good Heart Medicine
Have you ever stopped to think about how great you felt after a good laugh? When you laugh so hard you cry it can make you feel like a whole new person. As a health benefit, there is nothing quite like laughter. Laughing floods your system with happy hormones. It causes you to breathe in more oxygen than usual. Additionally, a good laugh can boost your circulation and ease muscle tension. When it comes to heart health, having happy hormones and more oxygen flooding your system is beneficial. Not only does it boost your mood, but it gives your heart some moments of joy and happiness that make you feel better from the inside out.
People Who Are Less Stressed Experience Less Heart Disease
Stress is a heart killer. Men who are stressed are much more likely to experience a heart attack than those who are not. Stress impacts the way we eat, how we hold onto extra weight, and even how healthy our heart is. People who are stressed often have higher blood pressure which is associated with heart disease as well. If you want to stave off heart problems, learn to manage your stress effectively. This might mean setting aside time for self-care, getting a less demanding job, and even making sure you spend time around people who ease your anxieties. Reduce your stress, and you’ll reduce at least one of the risk factors for a heart attack.