February is known as the Month of Love, and also marks the time of year when we try and focus on the disease that is responsible for the most deaths in our country; Heart Disease.
The heart is a muscle the size of a clenched fist that sits in our chest and works tirelessly to pump oxygen rich blood to every living cell in our bodies.
Essentially, our heart is what keeps us alive. Yet, somehow, the organ that does the most for us is the one we neglect more than any other.
Heart Disease is preventable, but remains the number one reason for fatalities in the United States, even outranking cancer by over 20,000 deaths according to the Centers for Disease Control.
How is it, then, that a disease that we know how to prevent, or at least how to slow down, is what is taking more and more lives each day?
The answer is simple; we just don’t care enough to change.
The steps toward a healthier heart are easy to follow, but most of us are too set in our ways to change our deadly bad habits.
The heart is a strong, vital component of our body, but it is neither an impenetrable nor an indestructible organ.
We can increase our health by stopping bad habits that are doing terrible damage to our hearts, such as smoking. Smoking, or even secondhand smoke, is especially harmful to our hearts because the chemicals that cigarettes contain can narrow your arteries, which can lead to a heart attack. Quitting smoking can significantly improve your health, because after a certain period of time the body will have repaired some of the damage.
Another way to ensure that our hearts stay healthy is to eat better. The phrase, “you are what you eat” is especially true when we fill our bodies with things high in fat or in cholesterol which can do extensive damage to our heart; eating things that are clogged with fat and salt can increase the risk of coronary artery disease. Having a well balanced diet that is low in fat, cholesterol, and salt can lower our risk of heart disease.
Another step you can take toward bettering your health is to start exercising for at least 30 minutes a day. If you aren’t used to a rigorous workout, don’t worry – you can start slow. As long as you get your heart pumping, and racing, you’re on your way to leading a healthier, longer life.
It can be very difficult to change habits that we’ve been clinging to for years, but improving your awareness and deciding to stand against this deadly disease will give all of us more years to enjoy.
Trusted Senior Specialists would like to wish you a very Happy Valentine’s Day!