It goes without saying, but your heart is an important organ. It is responsible for delivering oxygen and nutrient-rich blood to your entire body and it requires an ample supply of blood to function properly. However, some of us are experiencing conditions such as hypertension (high blood pressure) and coronary artery disease (from a build-up of plaque in the arteries) which affect the capabilities of the heart.
Cardiovascular disease is defined by the Heart and Stroke Foundation as “diseases and injuries of the cardiovascular system: the heart, the blood vessels of the heart and the system of blood vessels (veins and arteries) throughout the body and within the brain”. Recent statistics report that cardiovascular disease accounted for almost 30% of all deaths in Canada in 2008.
This begs the question: What can we do to keep our hearts healthy and prevent the onset of cardiovascular disease?
Top 5 Ways to Keep Your Heart Healthy
1. Exercise daily
Adults should aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate to intense physical activity per week to maintain cardiovascular health. For children, the amount of physical activity they require to stay healthy is much more: at least 60 minutes per day.
2. Make healthy food choices
Being overweight/obese puts you at significant risk for cardiovascular disease. Making heart healthy food choices (such as those that are high in fibre and low in salt, cholesterol & fat) and monitoring portion size can help you achieve a heart-healthy weight.
3. Quit smoking
This is a hard one I know, but smoking can contribute to the build-up of plaque in your arteries (the beginning of coronary artery disease). Plaque build-up causes a narrowing of the arteries and puts strain on the heart, causing it to have to work harder to pump blood through your body.
4. Limit alcohol use
It has been suggested that a glass of wine per day is good for you, but overindulging has the opposite effect. Excessive alcohol consumption can increase blood pressure and has been associated with heart disease and stroke.
The Kyolic line of products all contain Kyolic Aged Garlic Extract which has been has been extensively studied. Scientific research has demonstrated that when taken daily, Aged Garlic Extract helps to support cardiovascular/heart health, and helps to support healthy cholesterol levels. Maintaining healthy cholesterol levels can reduce the development of plaque build-up within the arteries, thereby contributing to a healthy cardiovascular system.