Now is the opportune time to reflect on your year and start visualizing goals and resolutions for the new year. As we quickly approach the start of 2023, it’s a great time to reevaluate and refocus our minds on taking good care of ourselves, particularly our heart health. According to the American Heart Association, heart disease is the leading cause of death in men and women in the United States claiming over 650,000 individuals yearly. Focusing on heart-healthy habits and goals is one of the best ways to improve your long-term health. Below we share several healthy new year’s resolutions and tips on how to best incorporate them into your lifestyle.
Start small and set realistic goals.
To increase the likelihood that you’ll see your healthy new year’s resolutions through, you should develop simple realistic goals. Try creating practical resolutions that you know you can keep and if a slip-up occurs, try to remain persistent and put in the effort to get back on track.
Slim down and eat healthily.
The new year is the perfect time to shed those extra pounds! Start with a modest and achievable goal; even a slight weight reduction can have a significant impact on your health. Losing as few as seven to ten pounds reduces the risk of type 2 diabetes by up to 70%. While adopting a fad diet might seem like the most ideal solution to shedding some extra pounds, a better way to take control of your weight is to focus on lifestyle modifications, like eating healthy foods, tracking your nutrition intake and regularly exercising.
Fit in some time for fitness.
Balance your diet with physical activity to maintain a healthy weight. A great way to stick to your fitness goals in the new year is to commit to exercising in increments. Instead of vowing to work out every day for the foreseeable future, commit to doing it for one month then take that success forward another 30 days. You can also incorporate more appealing workouts into your regime like walking with your dog or dancing with your grandchildren to help motivate you.
Reduce stress and tame tension.
Stress has a debilitating effect on your body and especially your heart. Highly stressed people have an increased risk of heart attack and stroke. Try incorporating stress relief activities into your day like yoga, meditation, deep breathing exercises, reading a book, walking outside and spending time with your family, friends or pet.
Get more quality sleep.
Failing to receive enough quality sleep each night can have negative impacts on your heart health, like the following:
- Increases your risk of heart failure and atrial fibrillation
- Leads to high blood pressure
- Causes overeating
- Causes inflammation
Some tips for a good night of sleep in 2023 include putting your phone down at least 30 minutes before bedtime, cutting back on caffeine and sleeping in a cool dark room.
Cut back on your sugar and salt habits.
Sugary beverages and sodium-filled snacks are empty calories that tend to do more harm than good. According to a Harvard study, consuming just one or two sugar-sweetened drinks every day raises the risk of a heart attack or dying from heart disease by 35%. Swap the sodas for fruit-sweetened water or green tea and the salt-loaded snacks for fresh fruits and vegetables.
Schedule a yearly checkup.
An annual physical is critical for maintaining a healthy heart. During your checkup your doctor can monitor glucose and blood pressure levels, identify potential problems early and discuss lifestyle changes and activities that can improve your health in the coming year. At AMS, we practice preventative cardiology, where we deliver individualized research-based care to our patients to reduce risk factors of cardiovascular disease and prevent symptoms from worsening.
Heart Healthy Habits With AMS Cardiology
Step into the new year feeling your best with AMS Cardiology. Our team of leading cardiologists is here to provide comprehensive care through individualized medical plans to reduce risk factors and provide the best treatment plans possible. If you’d like to schedule an appointment, contact us at 215-517-1000.