Cardiovascular disease, or CVD, is the leading cause of death in many countries, including Australia. According to the National Heart Foundation, CVD kills one Australian every 12 minutes.
Cardiovascular health is one of the factors that an insurance underwriter considers before offering a policy, and is one of the health conditions that can affect one’s life insurance rate. If you would like to know more, you can make a life insurance comparison at Compare the Market so you can be better informed about which health or life insurance policy can work for you.
To keep yourself healthy and live a longer life, you can follow these tips.
The secret to keeping your heart healthy is to have a healthy lifestyle! You’ll need the right balance of diet and exercise – the kind and extent of cardio workout you do depends on your fitness level, and as for the food you can eat to maintain a healthy heart, here’s a short list:
- Catch that fish! It is recommended to eat seafood at least twice a week. Seafood such as salmon and tuna are good sources of omega-3, an essential fatty acid that promotes healthy circulation.
- Eat more, eat less. Increase your intake of fruits, vegetables, beans, and whole grains, because they are rich sources of fibre, antioxidants, and vitamins and minerals. Other fibre-rich food you can indulge in are sweet potatoes, broccoli, berries, and beans. Decrease your intake of omega-6 fatty acids, which usually found in salad dressings, fries, and potato chips.
- Go for lean and low-fat. If meat is a big part of your family’s diet, go for leaner cuts (tenderloin, chicken breast). Plant proteins from tofu, lentils, and beans are good substitutes to meat. Low-fat dairy products are also preferable; non-fat is best!
Having a healthy diet translates to losing excess weight. Keeping an active lifestyle brings added benefits of a fitter body. If the thought of a rigorous exercise stresses you out, don’t worry. Go slow. Walking 30 minutes a day is a good start. In time, you’ll be able to increase your speed to a brisk walk, which burns more calories. Walking also promotes good brain function and it can even help you sleep better at night.
Sleep allows your body to heal itself and recover from strain. Six hours is enough for adults. Being well-rested also helps you improve your memory, have a healthy weight, curb inflammation linked to heart disease, lower stress, and make you become more energized for the coming day.
Good Habits In, Bad Habits Out
One of the good habits to do is to drink plenty of water. Drink water even when you don’t feel thirsty; thirst is your body’s way of telling you that you’re already dehydrated. As you drink more water, lessen your alcohol intake. Drinking in excess can increase your risk of getting a stroke or having high blood pressure. At work, remember to take breaks. Walk around and do some light stretching. If you smoke, motivate yourself to quit. If you feel the urge to light up outside, accompany a non-smoker on his or her break instead.
Don’t let cardiovascular disease stop you from living your life to the fullest. Living a healthier or longer life isn’t all that difficult—as you can see, it’s all a matter of watching what you eat, being active, getting enough sleep, and making the right lifestyle choices.