Parenting Tips

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Love Your Heart




Heart disease is number 2 cause of death in Singapore, after cancer. So what can we do to prevent a heart attack or stroke? Just know your heart and love your heart.

Below are some advices that experts offer:

© HEREDITARY – this is one genetic predisposition that is beyond control. Nonetheless, if any close family member has any history of cardiovascular disease or diabetics, it helps to be aware of the risk factors.

© SMOKING – this is one of the leading causes of heart disease. Solution – quit smoking. Within a yar of quitting, the risk of developing cardiovascular disease is reduced by 50%. One may consult the doctor on nicotine replacement therapies or refer to smoking cessation services.

© DIET – this has a major impact on your heart. What you eat is what you are. Choose a variety of whole grain products for consumption with combination 5 servings of fruits and vegetables. Cut down on fat intake – eat less than 2 gm of saturated oil per serving. Canola or olive oil is recommended. Also, reduce sugar and salt intake. Go for food with low calorie but with high nutrition. Reading the labels will help.

© WEIGHT – maintaining a healthy weight will help lower the risk of developing heart disease. If on medication and where in doubt, do consult the doctor before taking weight loss supplements or snack bars.

© EXERCISE – this will do wonders to the heart. Start an exercise programme such as brisk walking, swimming, line dancing, slow jogging and do it regularly. Depending on your health status and age, choose the type of exercise you are interested and comfortable with.

© CHECK-UP – this will ensure that blood pressure and cholesterol level are checked regularly. This should be done at least once a year. If the results are above the normal range, do heed doctor’s advice to modify diet and lifestyle. This will help bring the values under control. For more severe conditions, doctors may prescribe relevant medications.

© STRESS MANAGEMENT – developing healthy habits such as practicing yoga, meditation, slow breathing can help bring blood pressure levels down. Alternatively, you can also choose to do things that you enjoy, like reading a book, listening to soft music or better still, watching a comedy. Indeed, laughter is still the best medicine.

© WARNING SYMPTOMS – this can be heartburn, tightness emanating from the breastbone and into the neck, jaw and arm or shortness of breath. When one or more of the above symptoms occur, do consult the doctor and have your health checked. Prevention is always better than cure.

Hope parents will find the above tips useful and take care.


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