Your heart is unique. It is the size of your fist and beats throughout your lifetime. It never rests, it never complains. So, what is least you can do to protect it? Put it under lesser stress than what it already is under.

The leading cause of death worldwide is cardiovascular diseases (CVD) and what’s even worse is that 90% of these deaths are preventable.

With the rise of sedentary lifestyle, the chances of acquiring obesity, hypertension (Blood pressure), diabetes have risen making a person prone to stroke, heart attack (myocardial infarction), cardiac arrest and atherosclerosis (deposition of cholesterol along your artery lining)

So how can you protect your heart? here are a few tips to a healthy living and a healthy heart.

1) Exercise: All you need to do is get going. Run, cycle, hike or gym for at least 30 minutes per day for 5 days a week. Stay active. If you have a job that involves being behind a computer then get up often and take a small walk outside.

2) Diet: A low salt diet that is full of fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grain legumes, grilled white meat, nuts and seeds is best recommended.

Avoid food ingredients like butter, vanaspati, dalda, red meat as they can increase your LDL (bad cholesterol) levels.

3) Stop Smoking: Not just tobacco, even your ‘herb’ counts. Smoking raises your blood pressure and hardens your artery walls. Use nicotine gum or patches to help you beat the urge. Changing a habit is tough, so make sure you involve a friend or family member in your journey.

4) No alcohol: It is bad for your liver and your heart as well. Alcohol can shoot up your Blood Pressure levels and over a long time can have devastating effect on your heart.

5) Take a chill pill: The urban lifestyle is very stressful, therefore try to remain as calm as possible. Try to practise yoga daily and take deep breathes whenever the situation gets out of hand.

6) Sleep: No don’t become Rip Wan Winkle, 8 hours of sleep is enough to rejuvenate your body from daily stress and tension.

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