Heart Disease Exercises

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Exercise for a healthy heart.
Exercise for a healthy heart.

Heart disease is a blanket term for conditions such as coronary artery disease, congenital heart defects, heart rhythm problems and various other disorders of the heart. It is important for heart disease patients to exercise on a regular basis. Exercise strengthens your entire body, especially your heart.

  1. The Facts

    • According to the Mayo Clinic, heart disease is the leading cause of death in men and women worldwide, as well as the United States. That statistic shows how crucial it is to get your daily fill of physical activity. Exercise can help prevent heart disease, and it can add more years to existing heart disease patients' lives.

    Exercises to Prevent Heart Disease

    • Exercise can greatly reduce your risk of developing heart disease. Even if you are new to the world of fitness, you can still reap the benefits of physical activity. Start off slowly, and keep a pace that you are comfortable with. You don't have to run a marathon to protect yourself from heart disease. A study performed by Harvard University concluded that 30 minutes of brisk walking per day works just as well at combating heart disease as more vigorous exercises. If you are a more seasoned athlete, go for the gold and give your heart an intense workout. Running, swimming, jumping rope, tennis and bicycling are all excellent cardio exercises. If the traditional exercises bore you, try signing up for some dance lessons. Dancing is a fun way to get your heart in shape.

    Exercises for Heart Disease Patients

    • It is never too late to start exercising. If you have been diagnosed with heart disease, you can still benefit from exercise. Be sure to ask your doctor about the exercises that are best for your condition, and inquire about how long you should wait before beginning an exercise routine. Your doctor will likely start you out slow, advising you to walk 5 minutes per day and work your way up. Also, simple chores like gardening, yard work, vacuuming, mopping and dusting are considered good physical activities. Be sure to follow your doctor's exact instructions, because you can do even more damage if you're not ready to begin exercising. It is imperative that you let your doctor know if you experience chest pain or shortness of breath during or after exercising. He may want to perform a stress test to make sure that you're up to the challenge.

    Precautions

    • Always consult your doctor before beginning or changing your exercise routine. Be sure to drink plenty of water, at least 64 ounces a day. Water helps keep you hydrated and is good for your overall health. Avoid straining yourself too much, especially if you have already been diagnosed with heart disease. Make sure you get your fruits and veggies in at mealtime, and even for snacks. The nutrients in fruits and vegetables can help increase your strength so you can get the best workout possible.

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