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How Do I Maintain a Healthy Heart?

Eating enough fruits is important to maintaining a healthy heart.
Eating healthy foods -- and skipping the junk food -- may improve a person's coronary risk.
Maintaining a healthy weight can help avoid heart-related health problems in the future.
Not smoking can help keep the heart healthy.
Healthy circulation throughout the body is key in maintaining a healthy heart.
Fruits and vegetables are an important part of eating healthy.
Meditation can be relaxing and aid in stress relief, which can prevent heart disease.
A heart-healthy diet should include several servings of fiber-rich grains and fruits daily.
The anatomy of a heart attack.
Article Details
  • Written By: Kasey James
  • Edited By: Lauren Fritsky
  • Last Modified Date: 06 October 2014
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Three important keys to maintain a healthy heart are eating healthy foods, exercising and managing stress. Having a healthy heart can help to prevent heart attacks and other cardiovascular health issues. Incorporating these healthy strategies into your life may give you good cardiac health.

Eating healthy is the first step in having a healthy heart. Heart-healthy foods are usually the same as whole or natural foods. These foods include fruits, vegetables and lean meats. Fish can be beneficial to the heart as well. Whole grains should also be incorporated into a heart-healthy diet. Eating these foods should be a permanent lifestyle change, not a temporary solution.

Eating the right foods is important, but it is just as important to eat the right amount of food. Portion sizes are usually measured and marked on food packaging. Whole foods that are not marked should be eaten in moderation. Your physician can discuss portions and daily calorie intake, as each person has different dietary needs.

Exercising is just as important as eating healthy to maintain a healthy heart. Cardio exercise can be the most beneficial for a healthy heart. Moderate exercise should be done several days out of the week and at least 30 to 60 minutes per session. You should get your doctor's approval before starting any new exercise regimen.

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Exercises for a healthy heart can include going to a gym and using the machines or finding ways to be active at home. Walking is one of the best exercises and can be done anywhere. Working out with a partner will also help in maintaining your exercise on a regular basis.

Moderate exercise comes with many benefits. It may lower blood pressure and strengthen your cardiovascular system. Exercise can also help to maintain an ideal weight. Maintaining a healthy weight will also help to reduce the risks of heart failure.

Stress, anxiety or depression can all contribute to heart disease. To maintain a healthy heart, you should avoid smoking tobacco products or drinking alcohol. These habits can often feel like they lower stress, but they actually increase the risk of heart failure.

There are healthy ways to manage stress. Healthy eating and exercise will help to cope with daily stress. Meditation can also be relaxing and aid in stress management. If you are experiencing extreme stress, anxiety or depression, you should consult your physician for possible therapeutic solutions. Reducing stress can help to prevent heart failure.

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turquoise
Post 3

I eat fish and walnuts regularly, and I take heart healthy supplements. I think this is why I don't have any heart problems at 65. A part of it is genetic, but food also has a lot to do with it.

SteamLouis
Post 2

@anamur-- I agree with you, it can get confusing. I think the type of exercise you should do depends mostly on your general health. If you are fit and at a regular weight, you can certainly do more challenging exercises without straining your heart. Those who are just starting to exercise and are overweight have to take it easier because their heart has to work harder.

I think aerobic exercises like swimming, jogging and dancing are the best for the heart because they increase blood circulation. But if you have health issues like high blood pressure, do keep that in mind.

I have high blood pressure and I can't jog because my heart rate increases too rapidly. But I walk for half an hour every day and in the summer, I swim everyday. I think I have a healthy heart.

serenesurface
Post 1

I'm confused about how much I should exercise for my heart health. Some people say that in order to keep the heart at its optimum functioning capacity, it's necessary to do some cardio exercises that require effort. Others say that cardio exercises put too much strain on the heart and that something like brisk walking is much better.

I already eat heart healthy meals with lots of veggies, fruits and almost no saturated fats. But I want to make sure I'm doing things right on the exercise side as well.

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