5 Easy Ways To Lower Your Risk Of Getting Cardiovascular Disease

Start by joining a fun walk!

By Samantha Francis

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Walk or run, it’s up to you!

Do you recall the last time you went for a walk in the great outdoors? Or took the stairs instead of the lift? If your answer is no, here’s a timely reminder to stay active.

Number One Killer Of Women

8.6 million women die of cardiovascular disease (CVD) worldwide each year, which is approximately 1 death per minute. In Singapore, CVD is the number one killer of women and the prevalence of CVD risk factors such as physical inactivity, obesity and tobacco use can greatly increase one’s chance of developing the disease.

Most alarmingly, a heart health survey conducted by the SHF in 2013 revealed that only 11% of Singaporean women were aware that CVD is their leading cause of death.

Good news is, CVD is mostly preventable with the right lifestyle choices and a conscious effort to make heart-healthy nutritional and fitness choices. Here are five easy ways to lower your risk of heart disease.

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Make time for exercise as much as you can.

1. Stay Active

As much as you can, make time for regular exercise — it can be as simple as taking a walk! Physical inactivity is the fourth leading risk factor for global mortality (after high blood pressure, tobacco use and high blood glucose), and is a key risk factor for CVD.

2. Follow A Heart-Healthy Diet

To reduce your blood cholesterol and lower your risk of coronary artery disease, you should limit the amount of saturated and trans fats in your diet. A simple method is to eat larger portions of low-calorie and nutrient-rich food (fresh fruits & vegetables). At the same time, reduce the intake of high-calorie and high-sodium food (refined, processed or fast food).

3. Quit Smoking

Try managing simple lifestyle risk factors by, for example, not smoking. Smokers are twice as likely to have a heart attack, as compared to non-smokers.

4. Manage Stress And Anger

While it is normal to encounter stress and anger, learning to keep these emotions under control will contribute to better overall health. Stress contributes to cardiovascular disease and if severe, can cause a heart attack or sudden death.

5. Join A Fun Walk

Brisk walking can lower your risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes as much as running, according to a new study conducted at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Life Science Division in Berkley, California.

To increase awareness of the dangers posed by this ‘silent killer’, the Singapore Heart Foundation’s Go Red for Women (GRFW) campaign returns this year with the Pledge Your Heart mass walk on June 25th 2016. Women and their families are encouraged to take active steps towards a heart-healthy lifestyle by joining the 3.5km non-competitive walk.

If you are keen to participate, sign up here and pledge to join the battle against heart diseases. Fees start at $15 per person; $25 for two adults (Buddy Category); $20 for a mother and child (aged 6 – 12 years old) and $12 each for any group registration with more than 20 individuals.

 

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