“Keep thy heart with all diligence for out of it are the issues of life” – so goes an old adage. For when our heart stops, so do we. The heart is a muscle that beats continuously to pump out blood and it is of utmost importance to be aware of what strengthens and what weakens it. In this article, we tell you how to keep your heart healthy. 

Oxygen is Vital for Healthy Heart Function

We get oxygen naturally through breathing. A strong abdominal muscle is a key to a good breathing process. In order to get your lungs open up wide, you need to be using those abdominal muscles. If not it leads to a whole lot of problems including posture problems and inadequate supply of oxygen. So, to strengthen your abdominal muscles, you must work it out through Stretches, Pilates and Yoga. With strong core muscles, you can provide ample oxygen to your heart and increase its efficiency.

Interval Training to Increase Lung Capacity and Oxygen Supply to the Heart

As the name implies, interval training alternates between high intensity and periods of rest and is done in a continuous cycle. This type of exercise is the best to stay fit and heart healthy. For example, a 7-second high intensity with a 14-second rest period done for 7 cycles. You can bicycle, run or do push-ups, but you should exert your maximum during the high intensity and slow down during the rest period and then start over again.

One such training that incorporates this model is that of PACE – Pulmonary Accelerating Cardiopulmonary Exertion by Dr. Al Sears. All you need for this training is 12 minutes. And, the short bouts of intensity followed by rest and recovery will make sure that your body does not build up lactate, leading to lactic acidosis and other complications. During the recovery time, the lactic acid that was accumulated through high-intensity exercise will be mopped up and will give maximum calorie burning along with a powerful heart.

Stay Well Hydrated and Conserve Water in your Body through Sodium

The water loss in a day is 2.5 liters and all that water needs to be replaced. To keep your heart healthy water is crucial and it is also a natural blood thinner. For us to access and conserve the water in our body, we need another vital mineral and that is sodium.

Sodium can be acquired in the body through the whole salt. It is not necessary for you to cut back on salt as that will not let you conserve water. What you need to do is cut back on table salt, since it is processed and rid off all essential minerals. Instead, consume Himalayan Rock Salt or Celtic Salt that has the essential sodium along with other minerals including Magnesium.
Don’t stop salt altogether, as your body needs that sodium to function optimally.

One extreme is no salt and the other extreme is your table salt, you need to find the right balance by consuming rock salt in its natural form and strike the right balance. The other minerals especially Magnesium that is found in Celtic Salt is also vital for a healthy heart function.

Say no to Caffeine

Caffeine leaches on Magnesium and Calcium out of the body. It’s everybody’s darling but is dangerous for the body. Most don’t realize that caffeine contributes to dehydration, heart malfunction, and imbalance in heartbeats.

Nourish the Heart Cells with Nutrients

The three essential food groups for a healthy heart function is fiber, proteins, and healthy fats. Fibre slowly releases nutrients into the body and keeps you fuller for a long time. Without a generous dose of proteins, your body loses its natural capacity to heal. Further, fat makes up 50% of your cell membrane.  So pack your diet with these three essential nutrients to keep your heart healthy. Avoid refined sugars, alcohol, tobacco, and hybridized wheat.

Another nutrient group that is good for the heart is that of omega 3 fatty acids. Get plenty of omega 3 in your diet from plant sources like flax seeds, chia seeds, and walnuts.

 Cholesterol is not the villain

Cholesterol is not a villain. Seventy percent of cholesterol is naturally made by your liver. The body does not make anything that is harmful to the body.  Also,  cholesterol is not the sole reason causing a build-up in your arteries. In fact, your body needs cholesterol for its optimum functioning.

The first drug that people are put on to lower high levels of cholesterol is Statin. Statin not only blocks the liver from producing cholesterol but also prevents the liver from releasing coenzymes Q10, which is a heart-protecting enzyme. So, it is highly recommended to stay away from Statin Drugs to keep your heart healthy.

Natural Herbs to Keep your Heart Healthy

1. Hawthorn Berry – Well-known as the heart herb, it has loads of cardio-protective abilities. It is effective in treating several heart conditions such as high blood pressure, hardening of the arteries, irregular heartbeats, and heart failure.
2.Cayenne Pepper – Another potent natural food that acts as a natural blood thinner is cayenne pepper. In fact, a teaspoon of cayenne pepper in a glass of water can even prevent a heart attack. It has an instantaneous hemostatic effect that helps in heart attack recovery.
3.Ginger – Apart from its heart-protective properties, it is also anti-inflammatory and rich in antioxidants making it a real super herb.
4. Garlic – Adding great flavor to your dishes, this herb provides ample medicinal values including several cardiovascular benefits, lowering triglycerides and blood pressure.

Healthy Sleeping Habits for a Healthy Heart

Go to bed early and rise early. Don’t deprive yourself of quality sleep time. The hours when your battery power is recharging and your body is healing is from 10 pm to 3. So, it’s vital that you give the body the much-needed rest during this time and wind off early.

Hydrotherapy with Contrast Hot/Cold Shower

Take a warm shower and end with a cold shower in the last 10-20 seconds. It provides one of the best tonic-like effects. Our blood vessel constricts (with cold) and dilates (with hot), helping to stimulate our circulatory systems and create a rejuvenating effect.

While many assume that popping a few pills is enough to quell symptoms or prevent a heart attack, the real preventive power lies with lifestyle changes. Adopting healthy lifestyle choices and making a change will help to keep heart diseases at bay. Try to incorporate the above tips to your life and make that change!