According to WHO statistics, heart disease is currently the leading cause of human deaths worldwide and more people are beginning to take drastic steps towards minimizing their risk of developing the killer disease. However, most people are focusing on abating just one risk factor instead of cutting down on all of them while trying to improve their health. In reality, cutting off one risk factor out of several does not actually lower your risk significantly enough. A common aspect of lowering the risk of heart disease people focus on is on lessening their bad cholesterol levels.
Cholesterol is used by your body to build new cells and produce hormones as well as for several other functions. It enters the body from foods like meat and eggs and it exists in two forms: High Density Lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol and Low-Density Lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. While the HDL cholesterol in the right amount is mostly beneficial for your health and helps to clear excess cholesterol from your body, the LDL or bad cholesterol is harmful to your health as it can build-up in your arteries, causing a narrowing of your arteries and cutting or limiting blood flow to your heart, possibly causing chest pains or a heart attack. As a result, cutting down your cholesterol, especially the bad kind is an important part of better heart health.
While cutting down your cholesterol level is a step in the right direction, focusing on it solely does not really significantly reduce your risk of developing heart disease. Other factors like being overweight, smoking, bad dietary habits, lack of regular physical exercise or failure to get enough sleep can still lead to a heart disease, regardless of your cholesterol level. Some other steps you’ll need to take for better heart health include:
- Maintain a healthy blood pressure
High blood pressure levels can cause extreme stress to the inner lining of your blood vessels. A good way to monitor your blood pressure is to get a blood pressure measurement kit so you can be aware of your blood pressure levels regularly. Avoid stress and ensure you get enough sleep to ensure your blood pressure stays at a healthy range.
- Eat healthily
To lower your risk of heart disease. You need to cut down your intake of fat, cholesterol, sodium, and sugar and increase your intake of nutritious foods containing fiber, healthy fats, protein and healthy carbs.
- Exercise daily
Regular physical exercise can help cut down your risk of developing heart disease meaningfully. It is a good way to lose weight as well as beneficial to your heart health by keeping you in shape.
- Know your risk
Some other risk factors for heart disease include age, genetics, family history, gender, other prevalent medical conditions, medications etc. To limit your probability of developing a heart disease, it is very important that you are aware of the risks you face so you can start taking concrete steps towards addressing and limiting them. Also, ensure you stay up to date on relevant information concerning your risk level and other ways you can lower it.