Try these 6 small changes to improve heart health

As we begin February, it’s time to focus on matters of the heart. In addition to celebrating Valentine’s Day, February is American Heart Month.tips

As heart disease in the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States, this month focus on lifestyle changes to improve your heart health.

Dr. John Foreyt, professor of medicine-antherosclerosis and vascular medicine at Baylor College of Medicine suggests starting slowly.

“Think of the good choices you can make today,” he said. “A good place to start is by understanding where you are currently in terms of health.”

Dr. Foreyt suggests talking with your doctor to establish your goals when it comes to losing weight, or lowering your cholesterol or blood pressure.

He offers these tips:

  • Eat breakfast – people who eat breakfast are more likely to make better food choices throughout the day
  • Cut back on portion size during your next meal – don’t make drastic diet changes you will not be able to keep
  • Tell someone today you want to start making healthier choices – this will help to create a support system as you find others who are also looking to make healthy changes
  • Go to bed earlier tonight – the body needs seven to nine hours of sleep a night
  • Go for a walk this evening – start small, maybe just 10 minutes, and gradually work your way to longer walks
  • Weigh yourself today – The number on the scale doesn’t necessarily indicate your health, but it could help you make better food and exercise decisions throughout the day

“Small changes are less overwhelming,” Dr. Foreyt said. “Another good tip is to remember that every day is a new day and a new opportunity to make good choices.”

Join us on your favorite social media channel for heart tips and photo galleries celebrating heart health awareness on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Google+.

Additional Resources

Improving heart health: Adding supplements to your diet

6 Lifestyle changes to reduce risks of cardiovascular disease

Under pressure: Preventing and managing high blood pressure

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One thought on “Try these 6 small changes to improve heart health

  1. With regards to your first tip “Eat breakfast”, it is important to note that you should make it a healthy breakfast, not just any breakfast.

    For example, you could just scarf down a whole bunch of bacon and butter biscuits and call it a breakfast, but that’s not healthy.

    Instead, having eggs (which is a lean protein), some fruit, low fat yogurt or milk, and whole grains (such as oats or quinoa) can go a long way to improving your heart health.

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