These 5 common habits can put a burden on your heart

Certain habits can add burden on your heart, leading to diseases. This World Heart Day, improve these behavioural factors to boost your health.
Being mindful of eating habits will ensure good heart health! Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Grace Bains Published: 24 Sep 2021, 08:00 am IST
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Having a healthy heart is paramount to overall well-being, health and fitness. It is a vital and hardworking organ, which pushes millions of liters of blood to every part of the body, carrying oxygen and nutrients.

The World Health Organization (WHO) regards cardiovascular diseases as the leading cause of deaths worldwide. While genetic disposition is a factor when it comes to heart health, behavioural and habitual risk factors are also deemed extremely important for the heart. These factors include having an unhealthy diet, lack of physical activity, or tobacco and alcohol use.

heart health
Developing healthy habits can ensure your heart stays healthy too! Image courtesy: Shutterstock
These habits might add burden to your heart

Heart ailments are usually caused by a blockage that prevents blood from flowing to the heart, and certain habits can increase the risk of such ailments. These habits can increase the levels of blood pressure, blood glucose, and blood lipids, and cause obesity:

1. Eating junk or packaged foods

Be it pizza or potato chips, our consumption of junk or packaged food is harmful for our health due to the high levels of saturated fats and sodium in such foods. As per Harvard’s School of Public Health, eating good fats in place of saturated fat lowers the ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol, and improves the ratio of total cholesterol to “good” HDL cholesterol, thereby lowering the risk of heart disease.” An increase in LDL cholesterol can result in extra body fat, causing blockage of arteries, strokes, and increase in blood pressure. So, try to refrain from foods with saturated fats and read the nutrition labels carefully.

2. Consuming large quantities of sugar

We are all guilty of consuming more sugar than we require to sweeten our drinks or food. Be it in the form of aerated drinks or desserts, sugar consumption in large quantities is a menace that can cause heart ailments. A study published in the JAMA Internal Medicine, observed that a diet high in sugar may raise the risk of a heart disease, including people who are not even overweight.

Sugar can negatively impact your heart health. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

3. Lack of physical activity

Exercising is the most basic advice given to people dealing with heart ailments. This is because lack of exercise can result in excess body fat, which adds to the fatty deposits in the liver. This becomes a contributory factor to an uptick in LDL levels, which could cause heart diseases.

4. Alcohol and cigarette consumption

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Factors such as smoking and consuming alcohol, play a major role in the upkeep of your heart health. These lifestyle-related issues can increase the pressure on the heart, and trigger anxiety, causing diminished immunity, and an increase in LDL levels.

5. Not adding enough fruits and vegetables to your diet

We often don’t include enough fruits and vegetables in our diet, denying our body with a wide variety of nutrients such as vitamins, fiber, and minerals. According to research published in Cardiac Failure Review, a plant-based diet rich in fruit and vegetables, is beneficial to heart health. Therefore, try to include nutrient rich foods in your diet to boost your heart health.

So, ladies, be mindful of these habits, and ensure that you are taking active steps to improve your heart health!

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About the Author

Grace is someone who likes writing enough to make a living out of it. When she isn’t writing, you will find her having chai and reading a book. ...Read More

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