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World Health Day 2024: 10 lifestyle changes to reduce heart disease and boost longevity

Making lifestyle changes is crucial for reducing the risk of heart disease and promoting longevity. Here are ten lifestyle changes to improve heart health and increase longevity.

World Health Day 2024: 10 lifestyle changes to reduce heart disease and boost longevity RBA
First Published Apr 7, 2024, 7:30 AM IST

Every year on April 7th, we commemorate World Health Day. This day is dedicated to human health and global well-being. The World Health Organisation (WHO) founded World Health Day to raise awareness about major health concerns and encourage universal access to healthcare.


Alterations to one's way of life are very necessary in order to lessen the likelihood of developing cardiovascular disease and to increase one's lifespan. The following are 10 modifications in lifestyle that can enhance the health of your heart and increase your longevity.


Maintain a Healthy Diet:

  1. Focus on a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats.
  2. Limit intake of processed foods, sugary drinks, and saturated and trans fats.
  3. Consider adopting the Mediterranean or DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet, both associated with heart health benefits.


Regular activity: Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity exercise each week, as well as muscle-strengthening exercises two or more days a week. Physical exercise promotes a healthy weight, lowers blood pressure, and improves cholesterol levels.


Quit Smoking: Quitting smoking is one of the most beneficial things you can do for your heart. Smoking harms blood arteries, elevates blood pressure, and boosts the risk of heart disease. Seek help from healthcare experts, support groups, or smoking cessation programmes to quit effectively.


Manage Stress: Chronic stress has been linked to an increased risk of heart disease. Deep breathing, meditation, yoga, and engaging in hobbies and activities that you like are all stress-reduction approaches. Prioritise relaxation and self-care to boost your overall well-being.


Maintain a Healthy Weight: Aim for a BMI between 18.5 and 24.9 kg/m². Losing extra weight, especially around the waist, can lower your risk of heart disease and other chronic illnesses. Instead of crash diets, focus on long-term lifestyle improvements.


Limit your alcohol consumption: Drinking too much alcohol might raise your blood pressure and cause you to gain weight. To promote heart health, limit alcohol consumption to moderate levels—one drink per day for women, two drinks per day for men.


Get Quality Sleep: Aim for 7-9 hours of restful sleep each night. Poor sleep quality and duration are linked to a higher risk of heart disease and other health issues. Set a consistent sleep schedule, develop a calming nighttime ritual, and establish a pleasant sleeping environment.


Monitor blood pressure and cholesterol levels: Keep track of your blood pressure and cholesterol readings on a regular basis, and work with your doctor to keep them within normal limits. High blood pressure and cholesterol are major risk factors for heart disease.


Stay Socially Connected: Maintaining social ties and healthy relationships with family and friends can help improve heart health and general well-being. Spend time with loved ones, engage in social activities, and seek help if required.


Regular Health Check-ups: Schedule frequent check-ups with your healthcare practitioner to monitor your heart health and general well-being. Address any concerns or symptoms right away, and follow your doctor's advice for preventative tests and treatments.


By implementing these lifestyle modifications into your daily routine, you can lower your risk of heart disease, increase your lifespan, and improve your overall quality of life. It is never too late to start improving your heart health and well-being.

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