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These healthy food and workout ideas may result in keeping your heart healthy

These healthy food and workout ideas may result in keeping your heart healthy

A plant-based diet or limiting processed food and animal products, and focusing more on whole foods gives your body a variety of micronutrients, minerals and fibre.
Keeping food in their whole form gives your body more health benefits. (Source: Getty/Thinkstock Images)

People these days mostly have a sedentary lifestyle. This is characterised by insufficient physical activity in their daily lives. Studies suggest that 1 out of 5 people are physically inactive. Sitting for a period is a major reason for people developing heart diseases. Even for physically-active people, there is a threshold of 10 hours; this means sitting for 10 hours or more increases the risk of heart diseases. Sitting for a long period has become a significant part of our sedentary behaviour that triggers many health hazards relating to metabolism due to the lack of exercise or absolute inactivity.

“Over the years, there has been a significant rise in the disease burden, and heart-related diseases fall under the category. It is considered a major cause of mortality in India, and not committing to a lifestyle that ensures a healthy heart is the biggest contributor to the common cardiovascular diseases like coronary heart disease (CHD), high blood pressure and cholesterol that have reached epidemic proportions. Apart from some of the factors like family history, there are some factors which can be controlled by us by following some of the preventive steps to reduce the risk of developing the disease”, says Dr Prabhakar Koregol, Consultant Cardiology, Fortis Hospital.

There have been decades of the results showing exercise promotes heart’s health and it is aerobic exercises such as walking, swimming and running that provide the greatest benefits even in patients who have fairly advanced heart disease.

Mild workouts

* Thirty minutes of brisk walking every day has been proven to improve sleeping patterns and heart health.

* Swimming for most is an easy and relaxing sport that tends to benefit the body in multiple ways. Even an hour of swimming in a week is all you need to maintain good heart health.

* Moderate intensity dancing is linked to lower CVD. Pick a good aerobic beat, which ranges from 120 to 135 beats per minute, and do a little tango.

* There is no harm in getting some wind in your hair with cycling. However, if you are not able to find a good park to test your riding skills, a cycling machine is not a bad option either.

* Besides keeping your body fit and healthy, a regular aerobics regime also benefits the heart and lungs. It helps reduce cholesterol and diabetes risks, improves immune functions and much more.

* Elliptical Machine is one of the fastest-growing aerobic options. The biggest advantage of this machine is that it adjusts according to the heart rate and lets you exercise at a comfortable pace.

Being obese can contribute to the risk of a variety of heart diseases. In overweight people, fitness levels is much more important than their actual weight and losing weight may not be as important as increasing fitness levels. It is important to make sure to be within the healthy weight range, which can be monitored by calculating the body mass index (BMI).

Food is a key for good health

There is a lot of evidence that a plant-based diet reduces cholesterol levels. A plant-based diet or limiting processed food and animal products, and focusing more on whole foods gives your body a variety of micronutrients, minerals and fibre. Eating foods close to their natural form is most beneficial, for instance, eating a whole orange as opposed to drinking orange juice where the orange has lost all its fibres when it is juiced.

Keeping food in their whole form gives your body more health benefits. Swapping dairy for plant-based milk can help with the smooth transition from dairy products to plant-based products. The focus should be more on eating the right kind of food and avoiding the unhealthy ones and developing a habit of choosing the right snack can help you avoid many heart diseases and their complications.