Heart-Healthy Resolutions For the New Year
For smokers, quitting can be difficult, but kicking the habit is one of the best ways to improve health and reduce risks for cardiovascular disease, cancer and other conditions. A recent study found that in young adults who smoke, the risk of a major heart attack is eight times higher than in young people who never smoked or quit. Older smokers also experience much higher risk than non-smokers. While quitting smoking is often easier said than done, CardioSmart.org is a great resource to help patients get started with information on coping with craving and withdrawals, resisting triggers that may lead to relapse, and how to get support from family and friends and much more.
Resolutions are as much about stopping bad habits as starting good ones. Losing weight, exercising and eating better all go hand in hand. Losing even a few pounds can lead to improvements in heart health. CardioSmart provides patients looking to shed pounds with exercise trackers, recipes, weight loss tips and more. They can also find information on how to make the best choices at both restaurants and the grocery store. To be successful, people hoping to lose weight must change their eating habits, which may include making other changes at home or in the work place. Mental changes are also important – negative thoughts are counterproductive to weight loss.
Prevention of cardiovascular disease is an important element of ACC’s mission. We, who have dedicated our lives to improving the lives and health of others, have the ability to effect change and reduce the burden of cardiovascular disease around the world, starting with the patients we see every day. This New Year, let’s help patients set achievable goals and make lifestyle changes that can help them live longer, healthier lives.
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