Heart Disease: What You Can Do Now to Lower Your Risk Later

For more than 70 years, heart disease has been the leading cause of death in the United States, affecting millions each year and putting countless others at risk.

It is also unique in the fact that many forms of heart disease are preventable by taking up and sticking to a heart-healthy lifestyle that can lower the risk of developing a condition later in life.

And efforts to lower that risk can never be started too late or too early — adopting that heart-healthy lifestyle has real and impactful benefits when begun at any point in life. And lowering that risk is largely dependent on everyday lifestyle choices.

A diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, and healthy fats can reduce the risk of heart issues, as will regular physical activity — adults are advised to engage in at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise per week.

Avoiding tobacco and excessive alcohol consumption are other critical prevention choices.

Moreover, managing stress and getting enough sleep play a vital role, as chronic stress and sleep deprivation have been linked to increased blood pressure and cholesterol levels, which are risk factors themselves for heart disease. Regular health screenings for blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar will aid in detection, management, and prevention of developing an issue later on.

It is important to remember that heart disease is a complex condition, and each patient may require different levels of care. For those with diagnosed conditions related to their blood pressure or cholesterol, or blood sugar, such as diabetes, medications should be taken as prescribed to properly maintain those chronic conditions and keep their symptoms under control.

Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, it is crucial to work closely with a health care professional, be he or she a cardiologist or a primary care provider, to regularly evaluate, monitor, and, if necessary, take action to lower the risk for this disease later in life.


Cardiovascular Care at McLaren

Learn more about the high-quality cardiovascular care and capabilities found at McLaren.

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Primary Care at McLaren

Make an appointment with a McLaren primary care provider to evaluate and address your risk for heart disease.

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