There are simple steps set out by the American Heart Association to help your health. These seven steps can not only reduce your risk of heart disease, but can also reduce your risk of cancer by an astonishing 51%.
1. Get Active – Almost 70% of Americans do not get the required amount of exercise per day, which is 30 minutes or more. This should be done at least five days a week. Children need at least an hour of exercise per day. A study conducted on 72,000 women ages 45-60 showed that those who completed the required exercise per day cut their risk of heart disease by 40%.
2. Control Your Cholesterol – Cholesterol can block your arteries and lead to heart disease, which can then lead to a multitude of other health problems including cancer. If you cholesterol is over 200 mg/dl, you should see a doctor for advice on ways to lower it.
3. Eat Healthier – This may go without saying, but the better you eat, the better you feel. The American Institute for Cancer Research recently ran a study that showed that if we ate more foods with fiber and less meat, at least 64,000 cases of cancer per year could be prevented.
4. Manage your BP – High blood pressure poses a severe threat to your overall heart health and also carries a high risk for a stroke. One in three Americans has high blood pressure (140/90 or higher), and 67 million have pre-hypertension (120/80 – 139/89). Eating better and exercise can help to lower it without medication.
5. Lose Weight – People who lose 10% of their body weight or more when they are overweight can greatly reduce the risk of developing cancer. If your BMI is over 25, the AHA recommends eating less and moving more.
6. Reduce Your Blood Sugar – Nearly 26 million Americans have diabetes and 87 million have pre-diabetes. This can quadruple your risk for a heart attack.
7. Stop Smoking – Smoking is one of the highest cancer risk factors. It does severe damage to your lungs and cells. Putting an end to smoking will reduce your risk of cancer, lung disease, and heart disease.