Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death in many countries. Keeping the heart healthy no matter how old you are may limit heart diseases and complications. Below are a few common ways to keep the heart healthy:
- Maintaining a healthy and ideal weight as per age and height.
- Staying away from alcohol and cigarette smoking may help an individual to have a healthy heart.
- Engaging in at least 30 minutes of exercise or walking every day may burn excess fat and increase heart pumping capacity. As per research, adults who sit less throughout the day may have a lower risk of early death, particularly from heart disease.
- Eating a heart-healthy diet that includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and fish.
- Avoiding excessive salt, fat, and sugar from the diet may help in better heart health. Use herbs and spices instead of salt.
- Taking necessary medications for preexisting diseases if directed by your physician
- Drinking water at regular intervals may help in keeping the body hydrated. As per health experts or dieticians, individuals may need to consume 4 to 5 liters of water daily.
- The mind-body connection is proven to affect cardiovascular health. Using deep breathing, meditation, mindfulness, prayer, or other ways to de-stress may keep the heart-healthy.
- Having a regular sleep cycle may boost immunity, which directly or indirectly maintains a healthy heart.
- Walnuts and flaxseeds are a rich source of Omega-3 fatty acids, which can help to decrease swelling in the arteries and protect the heart. They can also help to lower cholesterol levels.
- Having small frequent meals may help with portion control and curb hunger pangs.
- Sexual activity may help lower blood pressure and risk of heart disease. Research shows that a lower frequency of sexual activity is associated with higher rates of cardiovascular disease.
An important way to maintain a healthy heart is to have regular health checkups. It is also important to talk to a doctor if a person has behavioral risks (unhealthy diet, physical inactivity, use of tobacco, and alcohol), so they can help plan the lifestyle modifications to get heart health back on track.
What are the most common triggers for heart diseases?
The most common triggers for heart diseases include:
What are the common types of heart diseases?
The heart is one of the body’s most essential organs, so understanding the symptoms associated with heart disease and adopting heart-healthy lifestyle strategies may be essential for every individual. Below are the common types of heart diseases:
- Arrhythmia: The term arrhythmia describes any change in the heart’s normal electrical impulses. Arrhythmias can cause the heart to beat too quickly, too slowly, or irregularly, resulting in a broad range of symptoms. Arrhythmia is one of the most common heart conditions.
- Heart valve disease: The heart has four valves that work in unison to make sure that blood is pumped in the proper direction. Heart valve disease can occur when one or more of your four heart valves do not work correctly. The valves may either narrow down and obstruct the blood movement from one chamber to another, or it may grow floppy and cause backflow of blood in the heart. Both conditions increase the workload on the heart, tiring the heart out.
- Coronary heart disease (CHD): It is among the most common type of heart disease. CHD happens when plaque grows in the walls of the coronary arteries and limits the blood flow to the heart’s muscle. CHD may ultimately lead to a heart attack.
- Heart failure: It is a heart condition in which the heart’s pumping capacity is not adequate to meet the demands for blood and oxygen required by the rest of the body. This can be the result of a range of conditions that lead to the weakening of the heart muscle.
IMAGESBrowse through our medical image collection to see illustrations of human anatomy and physiology See Images
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Top How Can I Take Care of My Heart at Home? Related Articles
Heart Healthy Diet: 25 Foods You Should EatWhat foods are heart healthy? Learn what foods help protect your cardiovascular system from heart attack, coronary heart disease, stroke, and cardiovascular disease. Plus, find easy meal recipes and menu ideas for more everyday heart benefit.
Can You Have Sex Right After a Heart Attack?It is important not to put any pressure on yourself or your heart after heart attack. Initially, you might feel less interested in sex. That is perfectly normal, and the feeling goes away quickly.
Can You Tell if Your Heart Is Healthy?Your heart pumps blood throughout your body. You can tell if your heart is healthy by taking 10,000 steps per day and having good blood pressure, BMI, cholesterol and blood sugar numbers.
What Is a Coronary Angiogram?Coronary angiogram is an angiogram (an X-ray image of blood vessels filled with contrast material) used to diagnose coronary artery disease responsible for heart attacks, strokes, angina, and other coronary artery diseases. Coronary angiogram assists the physician in diagnosing and recommending treatment for coronary artery disease.
Foods That Are Bad for Your HeartIf you want a healthy ticker, there are some foods you’ll want to indulge in every now and then only. Find out which ones and how to make healthy substitutes.
Heart Attack Symptoms and Early Warning Signs
Recognizing heart attack symptoms and signs can help save your life or that of someone you love. Some heart attack symptoms, including left arm pain and chest pain, are well known but other, more nonspecific symptoms may be associated with a heart attack. Nausea, vomiting, malaise, indigestion, sweating, shortness of breath, and fatigue may signal a heart attack. Heart attack symptoms and signs in women may differ from those in men.
Heart Disease in WomenHeart disease in women has somewhat different symptoms, risk factors, and treatment compared to heart disease in men. Many women and health professionals are not aware of the risk factors for heart disease in women and may delay diagnosis and treatment. Lifestyle factors such as diet, exercise, tobacco use, overweight/obesity, stress, alcohol consumption, and depression influence heart disease risk in women. High blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes also increase women's risk of heart disease. Electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG), stress-ECG, endothelial testing, ankle-brachial index (ABI), echocardiogram, nuclear imaging, electron beam CT, and lab tests to assess blood lipids and biomarkers of inflammation are used to diagnose heart disease. Early diagnosis and treatment of heart disease in women saves lives. Heart disease can be prevented and reversed with lifestyle changes.
CAD SlideshowWhat is heart disease (coronary artery disease)? Learn about the causes of heart disease, arrhythmias and myopathy. Symptoms of heart disease include chest pain and shortness of breath. Explore heart disease diagnosis, treatment, and prevention.
Heart Disease QuizTake our Heart Disease Quiz to get answers and facts about high cholesterol, atherosclerosis prevention, and the causes, symptoms, treatments, testing, and procedures for medically broken hearts.
Heart Disease Treatment in WomenHeart disease treatment in women should take into account female-specific guidelines that were developed by the American Heart Association. Risk factors and symptoms of heart disease in women differ from those in men. Treatment may include lifestyle modification (diet, exercise, weight management, smoking cessation, stress reduction), medications, percutaneous intervention procedure (PCI), and coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG). Heart disease is reversible with treatment.
Heart failure (congestive) is caused by many conditions including coronary artery disease, heart attack, cardiomyopathy, and conditions that overwork the heart. Symptoms of heart failure include
- congested lungs,
- fluid and water retention,
- fatigue and weakness, and
- rapid or irregular heartbeats.
There are two types of congestive heart failure, systolic or left-sided heart failure; and diastolic or right-sided heart failure. Treatment, prognosis, and life-expectancy for a person with congestive heart failure depends upon the stage of the disease.
Heart Failure QuizWhat is heart failure? Learn about this dangerous condition, as well as who is at risk, and what to do about it.
Am I Having a Heart Attack? Symptoms of Heart DiseaseHeart attacks symptoms vary greatly for men and women, from anxiety and fatigue to nausea and sweating. Learn the warning signs of a heart attack and know the symptoms that may require an immediate trip to the hospital.
Illustrations of the HeartThe muscle that pumps blood received from veins into arteries throughout the body. See a picture of the Heart and learn more about the health topic.
How the Heart Works: Sides, Chambers, and FunctionThe heart is a very important organ in the body. It is responsible for continuously pumping oxygen and nutrient-rich blood throughout your body to sustain life. It is a fist-sized muscle that beats (expands and contracts) 100,000 times per day, pumping a total of five or six quarts of blood each minute, or about 2,000 gallons per day.