Daily Habits for Heart Health© Malaika Arora/Instagram

Simple Daily Habits To Adopt For Better Heart Health

With a majority of our time spent in front of screens or indulging in unhealthy habits, our heart health takes a hit more often than we are realising. This is becoming more and more evidently true with rising cases of heart problems and cardiac-related deaths among the younger generation being reported regularly.

According to the Indian Heart Association, Indians tend to get heart diseases at an earlier age — almost 10 years before — than other demographics and usually, it comes with no warning signs. More light shed onto the topic with celebrities like singer KK, Siddharth Shukla and even footballer Christian Eriksen succumbing to sudden heart attacks. Studies suggest that these Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) incidents are rising among youngsters, especially between the age of 30s and 40s rising due to sedentary lifestyles, diabetes, increased use of alcohol, smoking and hypertension.

Falling into an unhealthy pattern is easy, however, escaping its comfortably evil clutches requires consistent efforts. But if you put your mind to it, the path to a healthy heart is surprisingly straightforward and easy. The key is to make time for yourself and take on habits that you can maintain in the long run. After all, prevention is better than cure. So, here are five simple habits that, when followed regularly, can help ensure good heart health.

5 Simple Habits To Take On For Better Heart Health

1. Cardio, For The Win!

Cardiovascular workouts usually have you breathing harder than usual, which means you’re pumping in more oxygen, thus allowing the heart to supply it throughout your body. Regular cardio workouts also help reduce blood pressure and heart rate, which means that your heart is not working hard when it doesn’t need to. And cardio workouts don’t have to be limited to boring treadmills and elliptical machines. In fact, you can get healthy while also picking up a hobby that helps your mental health, be it brisk walking, going for a jog, doing yoga, dancing, cycling, swimming, kickboxing or playing any sport! The key, once again, is getting at least 30 minutes of cardio for five days a week.

2. No Compromise 7-Hour Sleep

Nothing is worth missing out on sleep for—be it relationships, presentations, parties or even the next episode of the newest show you’re binge watching. A lack of sleep is more dangerous than you realise. As per a report by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, adults who are likely to get less than 7 hours of sleep are more likely to have a higher risk of heart attacks, asthma and depression. Moreover, a lack of sleep results in high blood pressure and a higher risk of getting heart diseases.


3. Eat an extra fruit or vegetable daily

You are what you eat, which means that eating right is incredibly important to your heart health. There’s plenty of fruits and vegetables that contain all the right ingredients that not only promote cardiovascular health but are also good for your body from head-to-toe. For example, leafy vegetables are rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. They also contain Vitamin K, which helps keep your arteries clot-free, decrease arterial stiffness and aid the function of cells lining the blood vessels. Fruits like berries, apples, bananas and oranges are also known to promote heart health.

4. Take less stress

Stress is an undeniable and unavoidable part of our lives. From the traffic to Instagram likes, we stress about everything, be it in the real or reel world. Constant stress leads to inevitably adopting unhealthy habits like overeating, not sleeping enough, smoking or drinking, which all lead to high blood pressure, increased risk of heart diseases and chances of a stroke. While external factors may present you with difficult situations, you can manage your stress better by channelling your energy in productive ways. For example, when you’re getting overwhelmed, take a break from whatever you’re doing and go for a run or indulge in a high-intensity workout.

Woman under stress©Pexels

5. Take more deep breaths

While smokers and drinkers are at a higher risk of contracting heart diseases, living in cities that constantly have unhealthy AQI levels isn’t good for your heart’s health either. While we’d love for you to escape to a location free of pollution all the time, work schedules and bank balances may not be in agreement. Instead, invest in an air purifier that lets you take deep breaths without stress. Indulging in breathing exercises like Pranayam and diaphragmatic breathing can help lower your blood pressure, manage your stresses, improve circulation and even strengthen your bones.