The blood vessels, heart, and other parts of the circulatory system play an important role in your body’s overall health. If your circulatory health begins to decline, you are at risk for heart attacks, artery blockages, and many other dangerous conditions. Follow these tips to help keep your cardiovascular system as healthy as possible.
The Better Health Channel explains that one of the biggest dangers to the circulatory system is sedentary behavior. The heart is a muscle, so it needs regular exercise to stay strong. Moving around regularly also improves blood flow and keeps clots from forming. Try to get at least 30 minutes of cardio exercise every day, and stand up to take a break from sitting every hour or so. Doing so will keep your heart strong and prevent you from gaining excess weight that might cause your heart to overwork itself.
One of the most common causes of high blood pressure is excess sodium because the modern diet contains so much added salt. You can reduce your sodium intake by eating fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins that you cook yourself with just a pinch of salt. Canned vegetables, lunch meats, and other processed foods are loaded with sodium, which can lead to poor heart and artery health.
Drink Plenty of Water
Your circulatory system works best when it is properly hydrated. Getting enough water allows blood to flow smoothly through veins without putting excess pressure on the blood vessels. According to the Minnesota Vein Center, hydration is an important step in improving circulatory health and preventing varicose veins. Be sure to drink at least 8 cups of water each day.
Don’t Use Tobacco
The nicotine in tobacco greatly impairs circulatory health. It tends to cause shrunken, brittle blood vessels that cannot easily transport blood throughout the body. Smoking cigarettes is the most dangerous because it reduces oxygen levels in the blood, but any form of nicotine usage, including vaping, can cause problems.
Avoid Chronic Stress
Mental issues can have a huge effect on your circulatory system. The American Psychological Association says that chronic stress wears on the systems of the body, especially on the heart. Stress causes spikes in cortisol, adrenaline, and other hormones. This basically puts your body in a constant “fight or flight” state that ends up wearing out your cardiovascular system by spiking blood pressure and heart rate.
As you can see, keeping the circulatory system healthy mainly relies on strengthening the heart, lowering blood pressure, and reducing the chance of clots. With these tips, you can help to minimize your risk of suffering from heart disease, strokes, and other unpleasant symptoms of circulatory problems.
Did you find this article helpful? If so, feel free to check out more related articles on the Health column of The Urban Twist!