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Blog: 5 Ways to Tend to Your Heart Health this Valentine's Day

5 Ways to Tend to Your Heart Health this Valentine’s Day

Most of us understand the vital importance of heart health — yet many of us have personal and lifestyle habits that don’t support a healthy heart. 

In honor of American Heart Month, the team at Phoenix Heart, PLLC dedicates this post to helping you learn about five simple ways you can tend to your heart health this month and every day of the year.

Quit smoking

Chemicals found in tobacco products are associated with inflammation that damages your blood vessels — and your lungs and organs, too. Damaged vessels can’t supply your heart with the oxygen- and nutrient-rich blood it needs to stay healthy.

Kicking the habit isn’t easy, but it’s one of the best ways to prevent heart disease, heart attacks, and other life-threatening diseases. Find resources to help you quit at and the American Lung Association website.

Move every day

Regular physical activity is important for your heart and for your overall wellness, too. Exercise helps you maintain a healthy weight, easing the strain on your heart. It also helps prevent hypertension (high blood pressure), a leading contributor to heart disease, including coronary artery disease (CAD).

The good news here: You don’t have to run a marathon or compete in bodybuilding to reap the heart-healthy benefits of regular exercise. Activities like walking, swimming, bicycling, dancing, and other aerobic activities are all great choices. 

Aim for 150 minutes of moderate activity every week — that’s just a half hour for five days out of seven, a goal most of us can easily achieve.

Eat smart

Your heart health is definitely influenced by your diet: Fatty or fried foods, prepackaged foods, and foods high in sodium all pose risks for your heart by raising both cholesterol and blood pressure. Eating a lot of sugary foods is bad for heart health, too.

Try replacing pasta and bread made from white flours with products featuring whole grains. Add in plenty of colorful fruits and vegetables along with small amounts of lean protein and low-fat dairy. Watch your portion sizes and read food labels closely.

For a more structured approach to eating healthy, read about the Mediterranean diet or DASH diet, both of which are associated with better cardiovascular health. Vegan and vegetarian diets are worth exploring, too.

Learn stress management

Chronic stress and anxiety can elevate your blood pressure, increasing your risk of heart disease and chest pain. When you’re stressed out, you’re also more likely to make unhealthy eating choices and have trouble sleeping.

Try adding some self-care activities to your daily routine to keep stress under control. Meditation, deep breathing, and yoga are helpful, but you can also reduce stress by carving out time to read, listen to music, or enjoy a hobby every day.

Know your numbers

Keeping track of four key numbers can help you track your heart health more effectively. Your weight, your blood pressure, your glucose (blood sugar) level, and your cholesterol level each has a bearing on cardiovascular health.

By keeping a record of these numbers, you can play a more proactive role in your health. Having that record on hand also helps our team spot potential issues early, so we can take steps to avoid complications.

Small changes make a big impact

Lifestyle changes are important for managing heart health, and so are regular visits with a cardiologist. 

To schedule your heart health evaluation, book an appointment online or over the phone at one of our locations in Glendale, Goodyear, Scottsdale, Anthem, Laveen Village, Black Canyon City, or Cottonwood, Arizona, today.

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