The number of Indians dying from cardiovascular diseases has increased in the last 15 years in India, according to a new international study. Making healthier lifestyle choices can make a big difference in your heart health. Here are eight simple tips to keep your heart healthy and happy.
Making healthier lifestyle choices can make a big difference in your heart health |Photo Credit: Thinkstock
New Delhi: The number of Indians dying from cardiovascular diseases has increased by 34 per cent in the last 15 years, according to a new international study. However, in the United States, the death rate due to cardiac diseases has significantly gone down in the same period. The study, published by Elsevier in the Journal of the of the American College Of Cardiology, showed that the mortality rate caused by cardiac problems in India rose by around 34 per cent from 115.7 to 209.1 deaths per one lakh population between 1990 and 2016, whereas in the US, it has declined by a remarkable 41per cent during the same period.
The findings highlight the need for the country to adopt plans that can help reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases at the population level. According to health experts, Southeast Asians, especially Indians, are more vulnerable to cardiovascular disease compared to their Western counterparts, largely due to their genetic makeup. However, genetic propensity, coupled with lifestyle factors such as a lack of physical activity, poor dietary habits make Indians more prone to heart disease than their Caucasian counterparts. Making healthier lifestyle choices can make a big difference in your heart health. Here are eight simple tips to keep your heart healthy and happy:
- Eat a variety of nutritious heart-healthy diet that consists of plenty of whole foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, etc. Read: Want to keep your heart young and healthy? Sleep for 7 hours each night
- Avoid foods that are high in added salt, sugars, saturated fats.
- Stay physically active by including exercise in your daily regime. Regular physical activity is great for your heart and weight as well.
- Avoid sitting for long hours - research has linked sitting for long periods of time to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and some cancers.
- Quit smoking (if you do smoke) - being smoke-free is one of the best things you can do for your heart and overall health.
- Maintain a healthy weight - take steps to shed a few pounds if you’re overweight or obese. Being overweight puts you at an increased risk of heart disease and other health problems.
- Manage other health conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and cholesterol.
- Get adequate sleep each night, at least 7 to 8 hours per night - lack of sleep is associated with a higher risk of heart disease and stroke.
In addition to the above suggested tips, one should practice good dental hygiene. While taking care of your teeth isn’t a proven way to prevent heart problems, poor dental health has been debated as a possible cause of heart disease.