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Three Simple Steps to Improved Heart Health

To improve and preserve your cardiac health, a few simple lifestyle changes can make a big impact.

We always stress the importance of exercise, but for those who feel intimidated by that word, a simple place to start is to increase the amount of steps you take each day.  Try taking the stairs whenever possible, park at the back of parking lots, walk to the end of your driveway to get your mail. Walking is one of the best forms of exercise and helps with other diseases such as arthritis and pulmonary diseases. There are also many downloadable Smartphone apps that you can use can to monitor your daily steps, with the goal of increasing your steps each day. This is a great way to stay active and improve your cardiovascular health. Soon, you will see weight loss and feel more energized.

Diet is another important focus. If you have hypertension or heart failure, you should throw away your salt shaker. Focus on increasing your consumption of fresh foods like fruits and vegetables and limiting processed foods. You will notice improvement in your weight and blood pressure. Limit the consumption of sugary drinks like sodas and sweet teas as well. These are associated with both obesity and diabetes. Simply eliminating sugary drinks can contribute to significant improvement in your overall health and weight loss.

Lastly, if you smoke, quit. If you are not ready to quit, any cigarette you don’t smoke helps. Talk to your healthcare provider about coming up with a plan to quit. We understand how difficult this process can be, but we also know how harmful cigarettes are to your health. We want you to be successful and will help in any way that we can.

Learn more about Mary McNeely, PA-C, and WakeMed Physician Practices – Raleigh Cardiology.

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