Staying heart healthy for American Heart Month


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Celebrate American Heart Month

Every year, one in four deaths in the United States are caused by heart disease, according to For over 90 years, the American Heart Association has been striving to achieve better treatment, prevention and eventually uncover a cure through scientific research with help from hundreds of scientists and physicians. In order to raise awareness and encourage heart healthy behaviors across the nation, several organizations are offering events to attend, places to donate online and providing ways to improve people’s lifestyle.

Healthy eating is one of the top ways to lower the risk of heart disease. Complications such as high cholesterol, high blood sugar and high blood pressure can all be linked back to what people eat on a day-to-day basis. According to Harvard Health Publishing, people who consume most of their daily calories from sugar are twice as likely to get heart disease than people who consume less added sugar. Not only is it the overload of added sugar in American foods that create dietary problems, but also the lack of eating heart-healthy foods such as fruits and vegetables. The paths to take that lead to a healthier diet are endless and they all lead the way to a heart-healthy future.

However, food choices alone aren’t the only thing protecting a person from heart disease. Mental health and well-being also have major effects on the heart. Varying levels of stress, anxiety and depression are all likely to cause heart problems due to the increase in cortisol and glucose levels. Stress and anxiety can be lowered by finding activities that calm the mind such as walking, exercising or simply resting in a relaxing environment.

In addition to improved mental health, exercising is yet another life-changing activity that could change heart health. Long term exercise can start with movement as easy as going for a walk every day or as tough as jumping into a hot yoga class. Not only does it makes you stronger mentally and physically, but it lowers stress levels, reduces inflammation and lowers blood pressure. Heart health begins with a single step, and in this case, it is quite literal.

The path to a healthy heart can be a journey, and each step leads to the same destination. Each step helps improve the other and it doesn’t matter what order they are done in. So this February ask yourself, “How am I heart healthy?”