How to prevent heart disease? Health may not be everything, but without health everything is nothing. By far the most common cause of death in Germany is cardiovascular disease. About 345,000 people died from heart attacks and ischemic heart disease in 2018 alone. But these numbers shouldn't be all that surprising, given our preferred lifestyle choices and with the knowledge that the heart is our body's engine. Fortunately, we can adapt our lifestyles and improve our heart health.
In this article I would like to give you 10 tips and preventive measures to improve your heart health and reduce the risk of heart disease to a minimum. Let's go!
In advance already a short Overview for you:
- Spend more time in nature
- Eat a plant based diet
- Consciously take time for exercise
- Reduce excess weight
- Give up smoking
- Reduce or eliminate the consumption of alcohol
- Minimize stress and other burdens
- Seek targeted compensation in stressful phases
- Measure your blood pressure regularly
- Stand up for good things
Notice: This article is not a substitute for medical advice, but merely provides information on tips for better heart health. Please see your doctor if you feel unwell or want to prevent heart disease with medical care.
10 tips to minimize the risk of heart disease
Our heart pumps blood constantly through our body to supply other organs with oxygen and nutrients. If this main function of the heart is disturbed, the risk of heart disease and other health consequences increases.
Accordingly, it is important to pay attention to your own heart health. But where do you start? Fortunately, we can easily identify the typical causes of heart disease. These range from excessive stress, for example, to lack of exercise and obesity, to nicotine. Here are the promised 10 tips you can use to prevent heart disease!
1. spend more time in nature
Spend more time outside in nature is an essential key to reducing the risk of heart attacks. The fresh air, the green trees, the sunlight, the chirping of birds... simply everything ensures that your stress level will slowly drop and your Immune system stronger becomes. Time spent in nature really has a calming and mood-lifting effect. A measure for the prevention of heart problems that everyone can and should implement regularly.
Tip: The next natural paradise is not at the end of the world! Learn now in the linked article, how you can get your Make your garden more sustainable and make it a mecca of biodiversity.
2. eat a balanced vegetable diet
According to a large-scale study by the Harvard School of Public Health, processed Meat the risk for Heart disease by up to 42 percent.₂ Studies have also clearly demonstrated that vegetarians and vegans have a significantly lower risk of common diseases such as heart disease and high blood pressure, but also for type 2 diabetes, strokes and obesity.₃ The reasons for this are mainly due to constituents such as Cholesterol and saturated fatty acids which are found almost exclusively in animal foods.₄ Another danger is posed by the Antibiotics which are used in the Factory farming are used, remain in meat products and can subsequently lead to antibiotic resistance.
Recommendations for a more heart-friendly diet₅:
- High percentage of vegetable fats (unsaturated fatty acids, e.g. from olive oil)
- Take in lots of fiber (e.g. from legumes and whole grain products)
- Reduction of products containing sugar (see Sugar free challenge)
- Reduce salt consumption (too much salt can cause high blood pressure₆)
- Eat plenty of fruits, vegetables and salad
- Avoid foods high in cholesterol (e.g. butter and eggs)
The Start into a vegan lifestyle is ideal if you want to improve your heart health. By the way also for psychological reasons. Because I can speak from my own experience that it will make you incredibly happy if your values ("I am against animal cruelty") match your actions ("that's why I don't buy products from animal-cruelty industries"). Furthermore, I don't think it's particularly good for us humans to eat the body parts of animals that have been unhappy and suffered extremely.
Tip: At Reasons for veganism I will explain to you once again in detail why I have become vegan not only for health reasons.
3. consciously take time for exercise
That I feel compelled to give this tip says a lot about our society. Over time, we have become more and more comfortable - also due to technical progress. We prefer to take the escalator rather than the stairs - and swing ourselves onto an e-scooter instead of riding the Ride a bike. But it is precisely these "manual" activities that decisively strengthen our heart. Because the Exercise lowers blood pressure and boosts metabolism.
So to improve your heart health and minimize your risk of heart attacks, make a conscious effort to exercise. From Walks, to gardening, to regular half-hour workouts. (e.g. jogging, push-ups, swimming, etc.).
4. reduce excess weight
Obesity represents a major Load for the entire body and is a decisive factor for heart disease. A weight reduction of just 5 kilograms can lower blood pressure by 10 mmHg.₇
If you want to do something for your heart and are currently overweight, then you should accordingly make sure that you are on a healthy way to lose weight. As you will learn in detail in the linked post, count a good sleep, a healthy diet and enough exercise in combination with the necessary Willpower among the absolute keys to this.
5. GIVE UP SMOKING
I know: many people are allergic to the word "renunciation". But Smokers have about a 65 percent higher risk of heart attackthan non-smokers. Not least because smoking impedes the flow of blood to the heart muscle cells.₈ Is it really a sacrifice to stop doing something that gives you less life and more suffering? If you want to prevent heart disease, you should work on it specifically, to stop smoking.
Tip: You need more crucial Reasons for quitting smoking? You can definitely find them in the linked article!
6. REDUCE OR ELIMINATE THE CONSUMPTION OF ALCOHOL
Alcohol consumption also poses a risk to our heart health, as alcohol increases blood pressure. Therefore, you should drink appropriate not at all or only irregularly and in moderation if you want to keep your cardiovascular risk to a minimum.
7. minimize stress and other burdens consciously
Regular stress is a key driver of heart attacks and other heart diseases. Not only because it increases the Increases blood pressure and stresses you psychologically. But also because you are easier to unhealthy behaviors tend to counteract the stress. For example, many people reach for sweets or cigarettes more often.
In order to reduce your stress level, you should first Identify the causes of stress and combat them in a relaxed but targeted manner. In the end, already one Improved sleep, more frequent relaxation breaks, regular yoga exercises (cf. Yoga advantages) or even a change of job (see sustainable job portal) can be crucial for better heart health.
Tip: Have you already dealt with the minimalist lifestyle busy? Parting with things you don't really need can also work wonders!
8. SEEK TARGETED COMPENSATION IN STRESSFUL PHASES
As we all know, problems only get worse when you put them off. That's why we should minimize stress-causing factors. But of course, stress cannot always be completely avoidedso you should definitely find a balancing passion to do something good for your "pump". This can be a sustainable lifestyle, regular boxing or karate training, a language course or the inclination towards more spirituality and Mindfulness be What would you do if you had no more obligations from now on? The answer to this can show you how to become even happier, more balanced and improve your heart health in a targeted way.
9. MEASURE YOUR BLOOD PRESSURE REGULARLY
I can give you so many tips for the prevention of heart disease - but only your Blood values will show you exactly how you reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. Therefore, also regularly have your Cholesterol and blood sugar levels determine and your Blood pressure to be able to counteract heart attacks and other diseases at an early stage. Your family doctor should always be your first point of contact.
10. Stand up for good things in life
Unhappy people (whether their marriage is going badly or they are lonely) are more likely to suffer from heart problems.₉ That's why you should do things that make you happy. We humans want to please others and enjoy any recognition.₁₀ That's also why it can make your heart glow with happiness if you good deeds in everyday life accomplish. So just get a little creative. Help an elderly lady across the street, offer a ride, collect trash on a walk, actively oppose Cruelty to animals or adopt a dog from the animal protection. There are really countless possibilities to help your heart in the truest sense of the word.
Use these tips to lower your heart attack risk!
Our health is our most important asset! All the money, sports cars and real estate in the world are worth nothing if the engine of our heart no longer works. Here are some valuable tips to help you prevent heart disease. And all of them are pretty easy to integrate into your everyday life.
Do you have any questions or suggestions about my advice for better heart health? Then I look forward to your comment.
PS: You want to reduce stress even more? Then take a look now at the soothing teas for absolute relaxation!
₁ R. Radtke, Statista GmbH: Most frequent causes of death in Germany (as of 09.12.2020), https://de.statista.com/themen/69/todesursachen. [21.04.2021].
₂ Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH, 2010): Eating processed meats, but not unprocessed red meats, may raise risk of heart disease and diabetes, https://t1p.de/arhw [04/21/2021].
₃ Albert Schweitzer Foundation: Vegan healthy, available at https://albert-schweitzer-stiftung.de/themen/vegan-gesund. [21.04.2021].
₄ Verband für Unabhängige Gesundheitsberatung e. V.. (2004): Does cholesterol also occur in plant foods?, https://t1p.de/4fex. [21.04.2021].
₅ Kristine Schweins: Heart Care (Prevent Heart Disease), https://t1p.de/li2c. [21.04.2021].
₆ Diakoneo KdöR: How do I keep my heart fit?, https://t1p.de/rmo9. [21.04.2021].
₇ Swiss Heart Foundation: How can I prevent?, https://t1p.de/l3hn. [21.04.2021].
₈ German Cancer Research Center (2008): Diseases of the cardiovascular system caused by smoking and passive smoking, https://t1p.de/gvc0. [21.04.2021].
₉ German Medical Association, National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians: Loneliness is bad for the heart and circulation (as of April 21, 2016), https://t1p.de/fbvd. [21.04.2021].
₁₀ J. Schindler: Why we please others and harm ourselves in the process, https://www.healthyhabits.de/anerkennung. [21.04.2021].