Heart HealthAs we celebrate American Heart Month, we recognize that heart disease is the leading cause of death for both sexes. Helping you keep your heart healthy the natural way is one of our most important missions at Carolinas Natural Health.

Every year, over half a million people die of heart disease, and many of those deaths could have been prevented. This blog will be a list of things you can do right now to strengthen your heart and protect it, but please remember the best first step you can take is to contact us for a consultation.

No matter how small a step you have to take to start, just do it. Baby steps count!

Stop smoking today.

The carcinogens and toxins in cigarettes harm your heart, and smoking raises your blood pressure and heart rate. It’s time to quit. Every state has a tobacco quitline at 1-800-QUIT-NOW, and you can get pharmaceutical aids to stop, as well as help and tips from specially trained coaches.

We don’t necessarily agree with using nicotine replacement or Chantix because we’ve found the vast majority of successful quitters went cold turkey, but we know that can be difficult. The important thing is to quit and stay quit.

Watch your blood pressure.

When your blood pressure is high, your heart has to work harder to pump the blood through the body. Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is asymptomatic (has no symptoms), so be sure to monitor it frequently. If you’re one of our patients, we’ll check your blood pressure at each visit.

Instead of the drugs most doctors order for hypertension, we’ll start with diet and lifestyle changes. We may ask you to take a garlic pill daily, reduce caffeine and alcohol, and remove sugar and / or wheat from your diet. Everyone is different, and reducing high blood pressure is easy once you know how.

Eat better and exercise more.

You knew this one was coming. While stopping smoking and keeping blood pressure down are very important changes you can make, you also need to eat a healthy diet and move. We are not saying you have to run a marathon or spend hours at the gym. Just move. Park your car further away at work and while shopping. Take a walk after dinner, or just go out and do your favorite activity. If nothing else, dance around the house!

Focus on eating real foods. If you can pick, catch, and grow your food, it’s real. Stay away from boxed and canned food. Stop eating junk food. Shop the perimeter of the grocery store, and eat food in its natural state. This means fresh veggies and fruit, plenty of fermented foods, yogurt, and organic meats and eggs.

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