You may have heard of many others who are in far worse shape than you are having heart conditions and ending up with heart attacks. You may believe that you are immune to facing such a thing. Especially if you are young and healthy.
However, the fact of the matter is that anyone can end up with poor heart health and with a heart attack that results from that. And you may be without knowing, increasing the chances of you ending up with a heart attack. There are 14 things that you could be doing that would be putting yourself at risk which are listed below.
#14 – Neglecting To Get Your Blood Pressure Checked
Those who have hypertension or high blood pressure are usually asymptomatic. If you have not had your blood pressure checked for a long time, you will want to get it checked. You can either go to the doctor to get it checked or to a pharmacy. A healthy blood pressure setting is 130/80. High blood pressure can increase your chances of a heart attack. So can severely low blood pressure, but there are symptoms such as light-headedness and fainting associated with that if low blood pressure is not normal.
#13 – Not Being Aware Of Your Cholesterol Levels
You will want to know the bad cholesterol which is the LDL and the good cholesterol which is the HDL. You will want your LDL levels to be <100 mg/dl and your HDL to be >60 mg/dl. If they are in the healthy range, then your heart health will be fine but you will not know unless you get it checked.
#12 – Consuming Too Much Fat That Is Saturated
If you eat too much red meat, cheese, butter, and chicken with the skin, then that is high in saturated fat. And that means that your LDL levels can increase which would be harmful to your heart health. It is best to cut those foods down in your diet if you are consuming them.
#11 – Living A Sedentary Lifestyle
If you are on the sofa in front of the screen too often, then you are risking your own heart health by not getting enough exercise. You need to work out for at least 20 minutes a day to get your circulation going which is important to keep your heart healthy. Take a brisk walk or do an aerobic workout.
#10 – Consuming Too Much Sugar
It is not just an abundance of saturated fats that are unhealthy for you. If you are drinking sugary drinks, eating too many high-sugared foods such as candy or pastry, or eating white flour starches, this can put a strain on your heart. You can easily gain weight by eating those foods as well which is dangerous for your heart.
#9 – Drinking Too Much Booze
Alcohol is full of calories which means it can cause the weight to add on fast, and that is a strain on your heart. It is also taxing to the liver, It can increase your blood pressure too. Moderation is the key meaning one drink a day is fine, but nothing more.
#8 – Drinking Too Much Diet Soda
Diet soda may not have calories but it is sweetened artificially which can cause metabolic illnesses such as Type 2 diabetes. That can put a strain on your heart which means it can increase your chances of ending up with a heart attack.
#7 – You Have An Atrial Fibrillation That Has Not Been Treated
There is a chance that you may develop an irregular heartbeat called atrial fibrillation or AF after the age of 40. This can make the heart less functional and cause it to be less efficient when pumping. This can easily lead to a heart attack. This is why it is important to go to the doctor on a regular basis.
#6 – Sleeping Too Much
If you are sleeping for 10 hours or more in a day, this can actually lead to poor heart health. That also means you are increasing your chance of getting a heart attack. Sleeping is important but moderation is also the key.
#5 – Not Sleeping Enough
If you have chronic insomnia which means you are consistently getting less than 6 hours of sleep a night (ideal is 7 to 9 hours of sleep), then you are increasing your risk of high blood pressure, obesity, developing type 2 diabetes, and all of that increases your chances of a heart attack.
#4 – Poor Stress Management
Some stress is good for you because it keeps you motivated, on your feet, and productive. However, if you are under too much stress to the point that you cannot function, then that can be dangerous. Too much stress can lead to high blood pressure which you know can be a heart attack risk.
#3 – Smoking
If you are a smoker, the lining of your arteries can be damaged and hardened as it closes off the blood oxygen levels. This will skyrocket your chances of ending up with a heart attack. It is important to quit and you will want to work with your doctor to put you on a plan to wean yourself off. Quitting cold turkey is not a good idea either as it can increase your stress levels.
#2 – Consuming Too Much Salt And Processed Foods, And Not Enough Healthy Fats
Salt and the preservatives in processed foods can increase your blood pressure and can cause fluid retention and gaining weight. Those are heart attack risks! On the flip side, you need to get more foods that have healthy essential fats such as Omega-3s from salmon, nuts, and avocado.
#1 – Not Being Aware Of Your Family History
If you are adopted or if your parents left you orphaned at a young age, or if you don’t talk to your family – you may not know your family history. And heart disease can be genetic. This means you may have a higher chance of being at risk of a heart attack if you have grandparents or parents or siblings that had heart attacks or heart ailments. Therefore, you will want to take a DNA test and find out what your family history is.
Once you tackle those factors and get yourself to the doctor to be checked, then you can lower your chances of ending up with a heart attack. Stay healthy and take care of your heart. Eat well, and get plenty of exercise.