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Preventing Cardiovascular Diseases

Cardiovascular diseases (CVD) are the number one cause of death in the United States. CVD is a general term for several heart conditions involving problems with the heart and blood vessels. These problems develop and persist over time which can result in sudden heart attacks and strokes.


One of the most common CVDs is coronary artery disease or atherosclerosis. This condition occurs when a buildup of plaque in arteries causes blood vessels to narrow and restrict blood flow to the heart. Some risk factors that can increase your chances of developing CVD are high blood pressure, smoking, high cholesterol, diabetes, obesity, and inactivity. Here are a few ways to maintain your health and reduce your chances of getting CVDs include:


Exercising regularly

Daily exercise is not only rewarding in terms of improved mood, health, and energy. It has a significant role in preventing heart diseases. The American Heart Association recommends engaging in at least 30 minutes of cardio exercise daily, such as running, cycling, or jumping jacks.


Having a heart-healthy diet

Your diet directly impacts your cardiovascular health. A diet involving nutrient-rich foods such as vegetables, fruits, and grains is the best way to avoid CVD. You should also limit intake of foods high in salt, sugar, carbohydrates, and trans fat—all of which are detrimental to your body and heart.


Getting enough sleep

Lack of sleep can have severe effects on your overall health. According to Mayo Clinic, people who lose sleep have “a higher risk of obesity, high blood pressure, heart attack, diabetes and depression.” Set a fixed sleep schedule and wake up refreshed.


CVD is common and can leave you with severe heart conditions; however, there are ways to prevent it if you maintain proper health.


References

“Strategies to Prevent Heart Disease.” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 26 Oct. 2019, www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/heart-disease/in-depth/heart-disease-prevention/art-20046502.


“Lifestyle Changes for Heart Attack Prevention.” Www.Heart.Org, American Heart Association, Inc, 31 July 2015, www.heart.org/en/health-topics/heart-attack/life-after-a-heart-attack/lifestyle-changes-for-heart-attack-prevention.


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