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Health

Three heart health tips you should know

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Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, but fortunately, it’s largely preventable.

February is American Heart Month, and you can increase your awareness about heart health with these three tips:

1. Focus on your midsection.

Excess belly fat is linked to higher blood pressure and unhealthy blood lipid levels. In a 2018 study in the Journal of the American Heart Association, women who carried more weight around their middle had a 10-20 percent greater risk of heart attack than women who were just heavier overall.

So, if your waistband has been feeling a little tighter these days, it may be time to take some action and make changes to your daily routine.

Eat fewer calories and increase the amount of exercise you do can help trim your midsection.

2. Don’t sit for extended periods of time.

Sitting for long periods of time can shorten your lifespan. The American Heart Association warns that being a couch potato can have an unhealthy effect on blood fats and blood sugar.

If you work at a desk, remember to take regular breaks and move around. Go for a walk during lunch and make regular exercise part of your daily routine.

Aerobic fitness is key to keeping your heart healthy, but it’s not just about cardio. Strength training is also important! By building muscle, you can burn bur calories and maintain a heart-healthy weight and fitness level.

3. Decrease your fat intake.

By decreasing your saturated fat intake to no more than 7 percent of your daily calories can decrease your risk of heart disease, according to the USDA. Read nutrition labels and be aware of what you’re eating.

Avoid foods high in saturated fat such as butter, cheese and high-fat dairy products. Red meat is also be high in saturated fat, so look for leaner proteins like poultry.

Heart-healthy foods include fish, whole grains, vegetables and fruit can make a big difference in your cardiovascular health.

Get In Shape For Women: 79 S. La Grange Rd. La Grange, IL 60525

(708) 557-7890 www.getinshapeforwomen.com