While chocolate covered strawberries and bouquets of red roses adorn the celebrations of love for Valentine’s Day this month, it’s also a good time to give your own heart some extra TLC. February is American Heart Month, a time for people to focus on their cardiovascular health and wellness. You can add more years to your life and enjoy more energy with a healthy heart.
Statistics show the danger of ignoring the signs of an unhealthy heart. Approximately 22,000 people in Georgia die from cardiovascular disease (CVD) every year, according to the Georgia Department of Public Health (GDPH). The DPH reports that the figure includes about 1 in 3 mostly preventable deaths.
To learn more about cardiovascular disease and how to avoid it, read the information and some simple tips below.
What Is Cardiovascular Disease?
CVD includes conditions related to the heart or blood vessels, such as:
- Ischemic heart disease (hardening of the arteries)
- Congestive heart failure (plaque buildup on artery walls)
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
What Are the Risk Factors for Heart Disease?
There are three main risk factors for fatal heart disease:
- High LDL cholesterol
- High blood pressure
About half of all Americans have at least one of these three risk factors. At The Lodge at Stephen’s Lake, we incorporate heart healthy practices into our meal planning and activities. Additionally, we’ve put together some tips for protecting the big hearts of our residents and older adults across the country.
Heart-Healthy Habits For Seniors
You can improve your cardiovascular health with smart lifestyle choices and proper management of medical conditions such as high blood pressure. Here are essential tips to keep yourself or seniors you love on the right path to a strong heart:
- Exercise. Physical activity is good for your heart. Work with your doctor and caregivers to remain active. Whether that means a walk around the grounds, safe exercises in your room, or assisted trips around The Lodge, every step helps.
- Quit smoking. It’s time to kick this deadly habit if you’re serious about improving circulation. You can also boost your energy and reduce the risk of cancer with one good decision.
- Eat a heart-healthy diet. Eat plenty of fresh fruits and greens and limit salt and saturated fats. It’s easy to eat healthy food at The Lodge because we put a lot of time and care into planning nutritious meals that also meet your other dietary needs.
- Reduce your alcohol intake. Alcohol consumption can exacerbate conditions like arrhythmias, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol levels.
- Watch your weight. All those extra pounds force your heart to work harder. Losing excess weight will help you look and feel better.
- Get better sleep. Seniors need to sleep well consistently, with doctors recommending seven to nine hours a day. Your body uses this time to reset and repair essential functions, including brain functionality, immune functionality, metabolism, and emotional well-being.
- Reduce stress factors. Find healthy ways to minimize your stress. Becoming a resident at The Lodge at Stephens Lake takes away the burden and worry that comes with running a household. Instead, you or your senior can focus on making the golden years the best they can be.
The Lodge at Stephens Lake focuses on the health and happiness of older adults in our care. With three options to choose from — independent living, assisted living, and memory care —you can find the right services for you right here in Jasper, GA. Contact us today to schedule a visitor learn more about our senior care options.