5 Essential Lifestyle Habits for a Healthy Heart

by DailyHealthPost Editorial

healthy heart

3. Reduce Sodium

reduce salt

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Eating a diet with too much sodium can raise your blood pressure. According to the American Heart Association, 98% of Americans eat more sodium than they should[3]. In fact, the amount they eat is twice as much as they should!

The AHA recommends reducing sodium intake to less than 1,500 mg per day. That might be a tough task because many of the processed foods and restaurant foods we encounter everyday are loaded with salt and sodium.

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The AHA demonstrates, however, that you have a powerful weapon to fight against too much sodium. Potassium can help your body fight against high blood pressure by relaxing blood vessel walls. If you find yourself eating too much sodium regularly, reach for a banana or other source rich in potassium.

4. Reduce Stress

relax

A study by the State Medical Society of Wisconsin demonstrates a link between stress and hypertension[4]. Stressful situations cause blood pressure fluctuations and force the production of hormones that constrict vascular walls. High blood pressure puts extra strain on your heart and increases the risk for heart attack and stroke.

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Try to manage stress effectively. If you find yourself in stressful situations frequently, develop strategies to relax and stay calm. Your heart health depends on low levels of stress.

5. Avoid Toxins

quit smoking

There are many natural and unnatural toxins that your heart hates. Scientists argue that environmental tobacco smoke, carbon disulfide, and carbon monoxide are harmful heart toxins that people come in contact with everyday[5]. Many people are forced to work in toxic environments. Sometimes, people willingly inhale toxins like nicotine or tobacco smoke.

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Environmental toxins and substances like nicotine that people knowingly put in their body are recognized as leading causes of heart disease. It is important to limit the amount of time you are exposed to toxins.

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