Keep Your Heart Healthy
♥ Visit your doctor. Have regular checkups including blood pressure and cholesterol level readings, as appropriate for you. Talk with your doctor about any risk factors including illnesses, ongoing health conditions and family medical history. If you have health concerns such as diabetes, high blood pressure or high cholesterol, carefully follow your doctor’s instructions and keep him or her informed of any symptoms or changes.
♥ Kick the smoking habit. Don’t put it off any longer. Many serious health risks are associated with smoking, including heart disease and elevated blood pressure. Consider a smoking cessation program or talk with your doctor about aids such as nicotine gum or patches. Counseling or a support group also may be helpful. Quitting smoking may not be easy, but your health—and life—depends on it.
♥ Fuel up with good food. Eat foods that are low in fat, cholesterol and sodium. But, remember that low in fat doesn’t always mean low in calories, so read nutrition labels carefully. A diet high in fiber can lower cholesterol, so be sure to include foods such as whole grains and beans in your diet. Fruits and vegetables also can supply fiber, as well as many heart-healthy vitamins and minerals. If you drink alcoholic beverages, do so in moderation.
♥ Keep your body moving. Exercise is important for a healthy heart—but that doesn’t mean you need to be a marathon runner. Aerobic exercise such as walking, bicycling or swimming is great for your heart. Choose an activity that is a good match to your fitness level and be sure to start slowly. Gradually work up to five days a week, 30 minutes a day. Before beginning any exercise or sports program, talk with your doctor.
♥ Learn to manage stress and anger. Keeping life on an even keel isn’t always possible. However, you can make changes to the way you react to life’s daily challenges. Use relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, gentle stretching or meditation. Look at your daily and long-term priorities. Are your expectations realistic? Do your best each day and let the rest go. Eating well and exercising can help make stress management easier. Make time for good health and good relationships—it will do your heart good.
Upcoming Wellness Events
- May 30, 12:30pm-1pm: Weekly Walk with Charles DeSantis
- May 30, 1pm-2pm: Bike Commuting 101
- May 31, 11am-12pm: Free Yoga at Yates Field House
- Jun 6, 12:30pm-1pm: Weekly Walk with Charles DeSantis