3 Ways to Keep Your Heart Healthy

Oct 2013

It’s amazing how much some of us take our hearts for granted. We might never think about how integral an organ our heart is until we encounter problems with it, either later in life, or due to heart-related illness.

But the truth is; our hearts perform a monumental task in keeping our bodies ticking over. On average, your heart will run at 72 beats per minute, and pump around 5 litres of blood in that time. Not bad for such a small organ not much bigger than your fist, eh?

So, to maintain your health and potentially extend your years, it’s vital to keep your heart healthy. Here are 3 simple paths you can follow to increase your heart’s well-being:

Quit Smoking

If you don’t smoke: well done, and keep it up. If you do smoke, you should quit at the next earliest opportunity. Smoking can clog up your arteries with a plaque-like substance, and is one of the leading causes of heart disease and lung cancer in the UK. The chemicals in cigarettes can also be very harmful to blood cells, and this all contributes to making life for your heart harder.

Limit Alcohol

When it comes to alcohol, consuming more than is recommended can have a detrimental effect on the function of your heart. Drinking too much can lead to inconsistency in heartbeat, as well as high blood pressure. It’s always advisable to drink no more than the daily recommended amount of two-to-three units per day.

Light Exercise

Doing just 30 minutes of exercise on a daily basis (or as close to a daily basis as you can manage) can exponentially improve your heart health, and reduce your risk of succumbing to heart-related illnesses. Exercise, whether it’s walking, jogging, or swimming, helps to keep your weight down and makes your heart’s job easier. And if you can’t make it to the local track or the swimming pool, don’t worry. Performing simple, yet more active chores, such as tidying the house, doing the garden, and walking the dog, can be just as valuable.