How’s your heart? No, not do you have a date for Valentine’s Day, but how is that vital organ in your chest? It’s Heart Health Month and it’s never too early to start taking care of yourself. Dr. Steven Reisman, cardiologist and director at New York Diagnostic Center, specializes in heart health. He shares with Bold TV how to lower your risk for heart disease and maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Exercise, diet and blood tests are the three main factors in protecting against heart disease. Thirty minutes of exercise for five days a week can decrease the risk of heart disease by up to 30 percent. The Mediterranean diet is the most friendly: fish, fruits, vegetables, whole grains and nuts are all rich in the very crucial omega-3 fatty acids. The third factor is regular blood screenings. Because high cholesterol, diabetes, high blood pressure and family history are risk factors, doctors recommend regular blood tests to stay on top of things. Some people have naturally above-average cholesterol levels, so they need to be proactive with exercise and diet. The key is checking in with a doctor to see when they may suggest medication.
What do young people have to worry about? They can have blood tests as young as 18 as well as have general exams every two to three years. Staying proactive can help young people make sure they stay around a while. There is a certain risk of sudden cardiac death in athletes ages 18 to 35. Because of this, doctors suggest regular screening for people in competitive sports. As for the average young person, it is never too early to establish a healthier lifestyle. Listen to your heart. But if your heart is leading you toward junk food and the couch, then you should probably not follow that.