Preventing Heart Disease

 

Whatever your age it is essential to try and keep your heart healthy and The British Heart Foundation (BHF) confirm that this is the most important thing we can do to help prevent and manage heart disease. The BHF provide a number of ways we can look after our hearts on their website and these include:

Healthy Eating

A healthy diet can help reduce your risk of developing coronary heart disease and stop you gaining weight, reducing your risk of diabetes and high blood pressure.

The BHF advise us to think of foods in food groups and to try to eat:

  • plenty of fruit and vegetables
  • Plenty of starchy foods such as bread, rice, potatoes and pasta. Choose wholegrain varieties wherever possible
  • some milk and dairy products
  • some meat, fish, eggs, beans and other non-dairy sources of protein
  • Only a small amount of foods and drinks high in fats and/or sugar.

Choose options that are lower in fat, salt and sugar whenever you can.

Staying Active

Physical activity can help reduce your risk of heart disease. It can also help you control your weight, reduce blood pressure and cholesterol and improve your mental health – helping you to look and feel great.

Managing Your Weight

The BHF show that your weight can make a real difference to your risk of heart disease. There are two main ways to work out whether you need to lose weight, one is your Body Mass Index (BMI) and the other is your waist measurement.

If you want to work out your BMI there is a calculator you can use online:

http://extras.bhf.org.uk/bmi/BMI_Calc.html?_ga=1.82945046.1225777301.1490006531

Smoking

Smokers are almost twice as likely to have a heart attack compared with people who have never smoked. Stopping smoking has huge benefits and it’s never too late to give up.

Alcohol

Drinking more than the recommended amount of alcohol can have a harmful effect on your heart and general health. It can cause abnormal heart rhythms, high blood pressure, damage to your heart muscle and other diseases such as stroke, liver problems and some cancers.

Stress

Stress is not a direct risk factor for cardiovascular disease, but it’s possible that it may contribute to your risk level. It all depends on your coping mechanisms.

All information sourced from The British Heart Foundation website https://www.bhf.org.uk/

If you have a Private Medical Insurance policy and want to know what cover you have in relation to Heart Disease or you want to look for a policy that would cover you for heart related issues in the future please contact us on 01245 929129 or by email enquiries@smphealthcare.com and one of our team will be happy to help you.