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7 Ways To Live Heart Healthy

heart healthy woman doing the splits

According to the CDC, about half of all Americans (47%) have at least 1 of 3 key risk factors for heart disease: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and smoking. Sadly, many health experts estimate that 93% of Americans have metabolic dysfunction. By living a healthy lifestyle, you can help keep your blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar levels normal and lower your risk for heart disease and heart attack.

Female Sweating After Exercise

1. Healthy Diet & Exercise

A healthy diet and exercise is key to living “heart healthy”. 

Eating healthier food choices like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean meats, and low-fat dairy products is essential. Not only does it contribute to your overall health, but also your heart health. Other parts of your diet you should be monitoring or reducing is less salt, saturated fat, and added sugar. Dr. Warner likes the Mediterranean diet to follow for a heart healthy regime. Carbohydrates are not bad in and of themselves. In the Mediterranean eating style, the carbs are simply more natural and whole, therefore higher in fiber and lower in simple sugars.

Another important daily routine is exercise, which will help you control your weight, control your blood glucose levels, and strengthen your heart. Even if you start slowly, try walking for 10 minutes, 3 times a day, 5 days a week. Walking after a large meal is especially beneficial. Just the act of moving a little bit after a meal will allow muscle to pull more glucose out of the blood stream.

Woman Quitting Smoking

2. Stop Smoking

Smoking is a proven risk factor for heart attack and stroke, and really almost all chronic diseases to include chronic pain syndrome. Smoking, vaping, and exposure to secondhand smoke increases your risk for the buildup of fatty substances (plaque) inside your arteries. Every time you smoke, it also causes a temporary increase in blood pressure. Smoking also provides an external source of oxidative stress to help destroy your cells.

Smoking is the most important preventable cause of premature death in the United States. For free help quitting smoking call 1-800-QUIT-NOW.

Woman Drinking Water

3. More Water, Less Alcohol

Be choosy about what drinks you are consuming.  Water is a key component to our body’s overall health.  Start by subbing out one sugary drink for a glass of water. However you should be drinking at least 64 ounces of water every single day!  Make sure your water is from a good source and that it does not have contaminants.

Alcohol can raise your blood pressure, the CDC recommends men having no more than 2 drinks a day and women only 1 drink per day.  The literature on alcohol always seems to be changing.  In general, think of it as a toxin.  But, you should also think of added sugars and fructose as toxins as well.  

Is Prediabetes Reversible

4. Know Your Health History

The first step in taking control of your health is knowing your and your family’s medical history. If you don’t know your family’s history, you should consult with your physician to talk about your heart health.

Doctor Measuring Blood Pressure

5. Manage your blood pressure

According to the American Heart Association, nearly half of American adults have high blood pressure and many don’t even know they have it!   The best way to know if you have high blood pressure is to get it checked.  Self-measured blood pressure monitors are easy and safe to use, and your doctor can show you how to use one if you need help. Know your numbers when it comes to your blood pressure.  Below is a guide to blood pressure readings:

6. Lower Your Cholesterol

There are two main types of commonly measured blood cholesterol: LDL (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol, AKA “bad” cholesterol, can cause plaque buildup in your arteries, and HDL (high-density lipoprotein) cholesterol, AKA “good” cholesterol, provides some protection against heart disease.

High blood cholesterol usually has no signs or symptoms. The only way to know whether you have high cholesterol is to get your cholesterol checked. Have your physician do a simple blood test to measure your cholesterol levels. Unfortunately, most physicians will only check the very basic tests. If you really want to know where you stand you need to understand your levels of smaller, denser particles of lipids in the blood.

7. Take Medications As Directed And/Or Add supplements to your daily diet

If you take prescription medicine to treat high cholesterol, high blood pressure, or diabetes, make sure you follow your doctor’s instructions. Always ask questions if you don’t understand something, and NEVER stop taking your medicine without first talking to your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist.

Something to consider is adding supplements to support your heart health. Dr. Warner’s Longevity Bundle can help you improve your heart health by lowering blood pressure, triglycerides, and cholesterol. Getting your levels under control can help you lower your risk of cardiovascular disease.

For more information on how to live heart healthy, check out our guide on What You Need To Know About Heart Health.

Dr. Meredith Warner Baton Rouge Orthopedic Surgeon
ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Dr. Meredith Warner is the creator of Well Theory and The Healing Sole. She is a board-certified Orthopedic Surgeon and Air Force Veteran.

She is on a mission to disrupt traditional medicine practices and promote betterment physically, spiritually and mentally to many more people. She advocates for wellness and functional health over big pharma so more people can age vibrantly with more function and less pain.

At Well Theory, Our surgeon-designed products are FDA Registered and formulated to help people:

  • Manage the symptoms of musculoskeletal pain
  • Recover vibrantly from orthopedic related surgeries
  • Fill the gaps in our daily diets
  • Manage pain associated with inflammation
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