In today’s fast-paced world, heart ailments have become commonplace amongst millennial. In fact, various research studies have suggested that the rate of heart attacks amongst millennial has witnessed a sudden surge. This alarming rise can directly be linked to unhealthy choices. A sedentary lifestyle, coupled with unhealthy eating habits can have threatening consequences not just for your heart but on your overall health.
The good news is that we can do a lot to alter this. Switching to a healthy, balanced diet can be the first step. Committing to a healthier lifestyle is not just advisable but necessary. And with that comes physical activity. So, to keep the blood flowing and a healthy heart pumping, here are a few simple activities to begin –
It’s common knowledge that muscles get stronger with exercise. When we exert ourselves, we expose our muscles to stress and they experience microscopic damage. During the period of rest, our body repairs the damaged muscles and this entire process increases their strength. Since our heart is a muscle, the same rule applies. Regular running lowers the resting pulse rate and increases maximal oxygen consumption. If you are working out in a gym it is recommended that you alter hard runs with easier workouts to ensure that your heart grows stronger. Reduced risk of arteriosclerosis, improved blood circulation and rise in HDL cholesterol are some of the positive health benefits of running regularly.
Apart from toning visible muscles, swimming is no less a boon to the most crucial muscle in your body — your heart. Water can have a calming effect on your body, while your heart gets a perfect workout. Swimming strengthens the heart and enhances blood flow throughout your body. As little as 30 minutes of swimming per day can drastically reduce the risk of coronary heart disease and increase the level of HDL cholesterol in your body.
The healing effect yoga can have on spiritual and mental health is a well-known fact to all, but the physical benefits of yoga aren’t discussed too much. Every yoga asana has an effect on our respiratory system, hence, it also affects our heart. Some of the most prominent health benefits of yoga include lower blood pressure, increased lung capacity, improved heart rate, and enhanced blood circulation. Asanas like tadasana, vrikshasana, virabhadrasana, and utkatasana are some of the simple yet effective asanas that specifically target the heart to boost its endurance.
Cycling is amongst the best cardio exercise for people across age groups and body types. Cycling on a daily basis will not just help you burn calories and keep your weight in check, but also reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases. It utilizes the large muscle groups in the legs to improve your heart rate, which helps to improve cardiovascular fitness. Being a low-impact exercise, cycling can be made a part of your daily routine without much strain. A daily ride of about 30 minutes is ideal for a healthy heart.
Moderate to light training is actually critical for heart patients. Besides building muscle mass and burning fat, weight training is excellent for your heart. Basic exercises like squats, abdominal crunches, lunges, pushups, and pullups can be extremely effective. The main challenge here is to incorporate proper progression. For example, once you can do 20 push-ups easily, increase the resistance by slowing down and counting to five as you raise back up and then again as you lower yourself. Bodyweight exercises offer a perfect combination of strength training and cardio endurance. Being very demanding in nature, these exercises help you burn some calories and also improves your cardiovascular fitness.
All the above exercises are excellent for anyone who wants to take control of their health for improving their lifestyle, however, if you suffer from any heart ailments, we’d suggest you get a health checkup, consult an expert and only then start with exercises, to avoid any complication.
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