A matter of heart: World Heart Day
Every year on September 29th, World Heart Day is celebrated across the globe. This day provides a chance for people worldwide to participate and promote measures in the fight against cardiovascular diseases (CVD).
The focus on this year’s World Health Day is to shed light on measures important to create a heart-healthy environment. Everyone is encouraged to make healthy heart choices and spread awareness to do so. Spreading awareness doesn’t require a lot of funds, or a large scale event and banners; telling your friend about heart-friendly choices equally counts for spreading awareness.
WHY CELEBRATE WORLD HEALTH DAY?
According to statistics provided by the World Heart Federation, approximately 17.1 million people die every year due to heart strokes and cardiovascular diseases. The number tops the mortality rates due to HIV, AIDS, cancer and malaria.
What’s the aim behind this day? It’s simple and do-able: it is to spread awareness, and to awaken people across the globe about appropriate and relevant lifestyle modifications required to prevent the risk of CVD. It is imperative that this day be promoted since obesity, physical inactivity, unhealthy, imbalanced diet (junk food etc) among children and young adults are becoming increasingly prevalent.
HOW CAN YOU KEEP YOUR HEART RUNNING LIKE A HORSE?
All the organs of the body have their own unique individual role in helping us live life to the optimum. With decrease in functioning of any organ, be it the brain, liver, eyes, kidneys, or heart, there will be a compromise in health. The heart has always been the center of attentions amongst all these organs, and rightfully so. Its main function is to cleanse the blood (oxygenation) and make sure it is transported to all tissues of the body. If this transport to any part is compromised, there are consequences.
Myocardial infarctions, strokes etc are one of the leading causes of deaths. As unfortunate as that is, fact is that these conditions are brought about mostly by the habits of man himself. The most important risk factors include obesity, unhealthy diet, smoking, sedentary lifestyle, physical inactivity along with genetic predisposition.
The following are some measures that must be incorporated in everyday life to keep the heart and ultimately the body healthy and fit:
- Eat a balanced diet – Avoid saturated fats and go for the unsaturated ones. Eat fish as they are crammed with omega 3-fatty acids. Avoid cholesterol containing food choices and give preference to fruits and vegetables. Also, most importantly, avoid junk food!
- Exercise – Just eating a balanced diet won’t give results as great as combining it with exercise. Don’t complicate your life by limiting your choices to the gym or pools. You can work-out anywhere. Browse ‘fitness-blenders easy cardio workouts at home’ on YouTube. Do a moderate intensity workout for 20-40 minutes each day and your heart will be good to go!
WHAT CAN YOU DO ON WORLD HEALTH DAY?
Since the point of this day is to awaken realization in people about the cons of smoking, unhealthy eat and sedentary lifestyle to the heart health, every individual can do a variety of things to celebrate it.
To be a part of this campaign, do this:
- Take a selfie making the heart symbol
- Share it on any social media (Facebook/Instagram/twitter)
- Caption any one advice or measure you normally do for better heart health (e.g. exercise) and one other measure you promise to try to incorporate into your lifestyle.
- Tag five other friends asking them to do the same!
Different countries celebrate in their own unique manner. Other ways would be to organize a run or a campaign and spread awareness to all for a heart-healthy planet!