Zee Media Bureau
Washington: Though cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death, there are ways by which you can significantly reduce the risk.
Judith Mackall, MD, Cardiologist at University Hospitals (UH) Case Medical Centre in Cleveland, Ohio, offers three tips to help reduce risk of heart diseases.
1. Exercise: Thirty minutes of moderate exercise every day can have a big impact on heart health. If 30 minutes is too much time to dedicate, then divide it into ten minutes and exercise thrice a day. Within ten weeks your cholesterol numbers will improve, blood pressure will come down and you will lose a few pounds. Just running a few miles can help improve cardiovascular fitness by increasing the flexibility of the coronary arteries.
2. Eat healthy: Eat a healthy, balanced diet. Remember the "Five Rule", i.e. consume at least five fruits and vegetables every day as part of a balanced diet. This helps manage blood pressure and decrease inflammation in the body, preventing risk of cardiovascular disease. Replace saturated fats with mono or polyunsaturated fats and reduce salt intake to ensure blood pressure and cholesterol levels remain in healthy ranges.
3. Quit smoking: If you are a heavy smoker or even a social smoker, it's time to call it quits. Smoking knocks off seven years of your life. And, if you have cardiovascular disease and you smoke, you'll die 15 years sooner than you would otherwise, Dr Mackall adds.