How to Keep the Cardiovascular System Healthy

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The cardiovascular system is quite possibly the most important system in the body. Not taking anything away from the other systems, but if your blood's not flowing, then you are not living. That is why it is of paramount interest to keep the cardiovascular system healthy and kicking. This can be dome by following a well balanced game plan that involves some lifestyle changes, some dietary adjustments and a little bit of exercise thrown in for good measure.

  • Avoid bad foods. Eliminate deep fried foods, processed foods, refined foods and foods that are high in saturated fat. These can all elevate cholesterol levels which can in turn lead to heart disease.

  • Eat the right foods. Eat foods that are nutrient dense, low in fat and high in fiber. Some of these foods include fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans and legumes.

  • Avoid smoking. Smoking deprives the body of valuable oxygen. It is also a stimulant and it causes blood pressure to rise.

  • Get some exercise. The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute recommends getting at least 30 minutes of exercise a day. This doesn't have to be at a really high intensity and it can also be broken up into increments. It can be something as simple as three, 10-minute walks throughout the course of the day.

  • Cut down on the stress. Being stressed out all the time can cause an elevated heart rate. Take time to relax and do things that are enjoyable. Some examples would be attending yoga or meditative classes, or going for long, peaceful walks.

  • Eat good fats. The good fats in this case are Omega-3 fatty acids. According to the Mayo Clinic, Omega-3 fatty acids can help prevent heart attacks and irregular heartbeats. Some sources of Omega-3 fatty acids include cold water fish, flax seeds and walnuts.

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