10 April 2019
Looking after your most important organ: top tips for a healthy heart
Pumping essential supplies, like blood and oxygen, to our bodies every second of every day for our entire lives is no easy task. That’s exactly what our heart does. For all their hard work and tireless efforts to keep us alive and healthy, they deserve to be looked after.
The consequences of failing to do so can be dire, or even fatal. Heart disease causes 160,000 deaths each year in the UK – that’s 26% of all deaths nationwide. When it comes to sudden cardiac arrest (SCA), there are around 60,000 out of hospital events every year. These are more often than not lethal. Without immediate treatment, such as the use of a defibrillator, 90-95% of SCA victims will die.
The importance of maintaining a healthy heart is clear. Let’s take a look at some tips to help you take care of your heart, organised in three handy categories!
The food you eat on a daily basis directly affects your heart, and a balanced diet forms an essential part of your wellbeing. There are some fantastic foods that encourage a healthy heart, along with others that are best avoided wherever possible:
- Eat more beans. These guys – including black beans, kidney beans, and pinto beans – pack a load of heart-healthy fibre.
- Get enough potassium. This essential mineral helps maintain a regular heartbeat and strengthens muscle contractions. Find it in abundance in avocados, sweet potatoes, and bananas.
- Remove or reduce salt wherever possible. High salt intake significantly increases your risk of developing coronary heart disease.
Being physically active on a regular basis goes a long way to improve your circulation, blood pressure, and general heart health. Here are some great tips to get you moving:
- You don’t have to go to the gym to exercise. There are plenty of fun ways to get your heart pumping. You could try yoga, dancing more in the kitchen, or taking the dog for extra long walks (up extra big hills).
- Make a routine. It’s all too easy to say “I’ll do it tomorrow”. When you have a schedule, it keeps you accountable and on the move every day.
- Bring a buddy. Whatever exercise you decide to do, it’s nearly always more enjoyable when you have someone to do it with.
Stress can cause a wide variety of health problems, including extra pressure on the heart. There’ll always be stress in life, but we should all aim to bring it down to manageable levels in the body:
- Start meditating. This doesn’t have to involve bells or chanting. Research has shown meditating as little as 10 minutes a day can help reduce stress in the body.
- Adopt a healthier lifestyle. Although already mentioned, regular exercise and a healthy diet will also reduce stress, which has a further knock-on positive impact on the heart.
Looking after your heart doesn’t have to be another thing on your to-do list. Making small changes to your diet, exercise regime, and reaction to stress in your day to day life can have tremendously positive effects on your heart health.
No matter how well you look after your heart, sudden cardiac arrest can still strike. And when that happens, you’ll want a defibrillator by your side. Investing in just one for your organisation can make the difference between life and death. Whether you would prefer to lease or buy our products, get in touch today on 0333 050 6649 to find out how we can help you.