You should know the importance of the heart as an organ. Without a heart, you can’t live! With that said, you need to take care of your heart. Here, I’m going to talk about the vital things you must know to make sure your heart runs like a horse. Well, not exactly like a horse, but here are 7 things you should know about heart health.
Check Your Cholesterol Level
You can only find out information about your blood cholesterol via a blood or cholesterol test. Otherwise, you can be skinny and fit and still have high cholesterol. Don’t make the mistake of assumption and put yourself at a risk of cardiovascular disease!
It is imperative to keep a track of your blood cholesterol every now and then due to the strong impact of high cholesterol on your heart health. Too much cholesterol leads to its deposition in the walls of the arteries in the heart, leading to a condition known as atherosclerosis. In this disease, the arteries are narrowed because of the cholesterol build up and blood flow throw them is impaired.
Check Your Heart Rate
Heart rate is the number of times your heart beats per minute. This is crucial to your heart health. The normal heart rate varies from one age group to another. The average heart rate (in resting state) of an adult is 60-100 beats per minute. The most common place for finding your pulse is the wrist.
If your heart rate is increased by a great margin or irregular, it’s imperative to go see a doctor!
Blood pressure: Key to Heart Health
You often hear doctors saying ‘blood pressure’s dropping’ or ‘BP’s shooting!’, but do you know what it really means? Blood pressure is the pressure exerted by the blood on the artery walls of the heart, while the blood is being pumped out.
Normal blood pressure is below 120/80. When blood pressure is consistently higher than that, it hints towards hypertension. Hypertension is a silent killer – it doesn’t come with symptoms.
It is therefore necessary to monitor your blood pressure frequently. You can do it yourself at home using a digital blood pressure device.
Know Your Numbers
Blood pressure and heart rate aren’t the only numbers you need to keep track of. Another measurement you need to be monitoring is your waistline. Obese people are multiple times greater at risk of heart attack, hypertension and atherosclerosis.
Keep a track of your BMI. It is calculated by dividing your weight in kilograms by the square of your height in meters. If your BMI is above 25, you are over-weight.
Of course, smoking as you should know, affects your lungs and can cause lung cancer. But, did you know that smoking also increases your risk of a heart attack? An estimated 1 out of 5 deaths from heart disease is directly linked to smoking. The nicotine in cigarette raises your blood pressure and shoots your heart rate.
Stressing out does not only mentally frustrate you, but also has an impact on your heart. Stress is an established risk factor for heart disease. Stress leads to persistently high levels of hormones like adrenaline and cortisol and has also been linked to changes in the way blood clots.
Exercise More to Keep Your Heart Young
Make exercise a part of your life. Take a walk or go for a run every day, join the gym or do an easy cardio work-out at home! It strengthens your heart, helps maintain you blood pressure, and also helps regulate your weight!