February is Heart Awareness Month making it a great time to reflect on the importance of physical activity/health, especially as it relates to our hearts. The heart is a remarkable organ that pumps blood and oxygen to every cell in our body nonstop, keeping us alive. But in the rush of life, we often overlook our health, which is detrimental to our heart health.
The heart is the hardest working muscle, it represents strength, energy and life itself. It beats 100,000 times a day, keeps us alive by circulating oxygen and nutrients and eliminates waste from our cells. Our existence is solely based on this most important organ which is crucial to preserving its function.
Keeping our Heart Healthy
Our heart is directly impacted by our physical state. Maintaining it requires exercise, a balanced diet, mental health, and refraining from bad habits like smoking and drinking. Exercise lowers the risk of heart disease, stroke, and other cardiovascular conditions by strengthening it, improving circulation, and managing blood pressure.
Maintaining proper nutrition intake is equally important to keeping our heart healthy as exercise is. A diet consisting of fruit, vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains helps the heart function properly. Reducing the intake of processed food, saturated fats, and high sodium will help decrease inflammation, cholesterol, and artery blockages. A balanced diet is fuel for our hearts.
The relationship between the Mind and the Body
The relationship between the mind and the body is vital for heart health. If you’re stressed, anxious or depressed your heart rate and blood pressure could rise. This may interrupt your heart rhythm and affect immunity, making us open to cardiovascular illness.
Activities, meditation, and yoga along with spending time in the great outdoors help improve emotional well-being and promote mental and physical balance.
Over time, habits such as smoking can wreak havoc on the heart. Smoking constricts blood vessels, reduces oxygen, and increases the formation of arterial plaque escalating the risk of heart attacks and strokes. Quitting smoking can help nurture a healthier lifestyle, creating a healthier heart and prolonging life.
Armed with knowledge and proactive measures, it is important in the fight against cardiovascular disease. Regular health screenings and educational initiatives play a pivotal role in promoting heart health. Embracing healthy lifestyle choices paves the way toward a healthy heart and decreases the risk of mortality due to heart failure.