February is Heart Month—for good reason. Did you know that heart disease is the second leading cause of death among Canadians, second only to all types of cancer added together?
The good news is, there are plenty of steps you can take to protect your heart health as you age. Our Qualicare team has a few tips to share:
You may think of smoking as a risk factor for lung cancer, but quitting smoking can also help improve your heart health. Being a nonsmoker reduces your risk of both heart attack and stroke.
Therefore, if you are looking for one of the best things you can do for your heart health, work on quitting smoking as soon as possible! Talk with a doctor about what cessation strategies might work best for you.
Watch Your Cholesterol Numbers
When was the last time you had blood work done? If it’s been more than a year, you need to undergo an annual physical with blood work to ensure your numbers are within healthy range, especially when it comes to your cholesterol levels.
When you have high cholesterol, it can increase your risk of suffering from a heart attack or stroke. Therefore, you need to keep watch on your cholesterol numbers to ensure you are staying within a healthy range.
Maintain Healthy Blood Pressure
In addition to your cholesterol numbers, you also want to make sure your blood pressure is not too high.
If it is, you need to talk to your physician about ways you can lower your blood pressure, such as through a healthy diet, regular exercise and/or medication.
Get Enough Exercise
It’s time to eliminate all the excuses you usually use in order to skip a workout. It just isn’t worth it!
Regular exercise is one of the best ways you can protect your heart health. Aim for at least 30 minutes on most days of the week, and include both heart-pumping cardiovascular activities and strength training for best results.
Are you looking to improve your loved one’s quality of life? Discover how the in-home care providers at Qualicare can help!