The 8 golden rules to lead a healthy lifestyle

The heart is a muscle that beats more than 100,000 times a day. And it will do it up to 42 million times throughout the existence of a person. His activity is incessant. It is responsible for pumping blood to all parts of the body and oxygenate cells. Just taking care of it will ensure good health.

Keeping it in good shape is not complicated. With the right information, any of us can start today to exercise it to prevent cardiovascular and circulatory system diseases. These were the first causes of mortality in Spain in 2016 with 29.2% of the total according to the National Statistics Institute. And it is that these types of diseases develop silently over the years and only manifest their symptoms when they are already in an advanced stage.

It is very important to know the foods we eat, their composition, read their nutritional labeling and know what amounts of sugar and salt they contain

In the month of the heart, the pharmacy network Apoteca Natura makes available to anyone who wants to know the health of the heart with a simple free questionnaire . The initiative is part of the National Campaign for the Prevention of Cardiovascular Health, an example at European level in prevention issues that in Spain is carried out in collaboration with SEMERGEN (Spanish Society of Primary Care Physicians) and with SIMG, (Italian Society of General Medicine and Primary Care).

With “we take care of you heart”, Apoteca Natura proposes an information and education program through an integrated strategy to sensitize people about cardiovascular well-being and promote prevention. Because it is essential that we identify the possible risk factors. A balanced diet, physical activity, sleeping enough hours a day and maintaining a low level of stress are essential healthy habits to prevent these pathologies.

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1.Leave a balanced and varied diet. Limit consumption of unhealthy fats, high cholesterol foods, salt, sodium and added sugars. The diet should include nuts, vegetables, fruits, white meats, blue fish, legumes, fiber and a lot of liquid, very much in line with the Mediterranean diet. Add to the shopping cart skimmed or semi-skimmed products for their lower amount of fat. Avoid all processed foods and replace them with homemade food.

2. Practice exercise. Goodbye sedentary lifestyle, hello active life. According to the Spanish Heart Foundation, walking at least 30 minutes a day at a rapid pace for five days a week increases life expectancy and reduces cardiovascular risk up to 11%. Performing a physical activity also improves mood and reduces stress.

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3. Avoid stress. Try to minimize your level of stress, which usually occurs at work. An excess of stress leads to chronic fatigue and can cause heart disease. Taking a calm life, doing relaxing activities and thinking positive is a good habit.

4.Improve rest. Sleeping regularly between 7 and 8 hours a day reduces stress and helps our body recover from daily activity. Pay attention to the condition of the mattress and ensure that the bedroom is an optimal resting environment. Avoid going to bed watching your mobile or television as they are stimuli that hinder sleep. And turn off the devices that can create electromagnetic fields, nothing favorable to rest.

Cardiovascular diseases affect women more than men and, with age, the risk increases progressively

5. Control cholesterol. It is the only way to make sure the arteries will not block, causing a heart attack or stroke. It should not exceed 200 mg / dl. In addition to being related to the type of food we eat, there are people who have a hereditary gene that causes them to produce too much bad cholesterol (LDL). Check it with analytics and periodic checks, especially if you have a genetic background.

6.Control blood pressure. Having high blood pressure is a very important risk factor. Hypertension causes blood to flow through the arteries too strongly and that affects all our organs.

75% of blood cholesterol comes from our liver and our own cells and the remaining 25% of food

7.Reduce the consumption of alcohol and tobacco. Avoid the consumption of alcohol and tobacco to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. Smoking damages the circulatory system, increases the risk of aneurysms and coronary heart disease and promotes the appearance of blood clots. Its effects are cumulative. And as for alcohol, it is a toxic to the heart muscle, which according to the Spanish Heart Foundation can weaken it and cause a disease called dilated cardiomyopathy (the heart dilates and decreases the force of “pumping”), causing symptoms of heart failure.

8. Maintain a balanced weight. Obesity or overweight is a risk for hypertension, cholesterol problems and diabetes. It is also an independent risk factor, which makes us have more ballots to have a cardiovascular problem. On the other hand, weight is directly related to heart problems, chronic fatigue and other diseases. It is best to keep the kilos under control in a balanced way.