February is National Heart Month and we’ve been hearing a lot about building awareness of how a heart attack feels: chest discomfort, shortness of breath, pain in arms, back, neck, or jaw, cold sweats, nausea or light headedness. Of course these are critical to know so you can get help a.s.a.p., but what is even more important to know is what you can do to help prevent these “signs” from ever happening in the first place!
Here’s how you can manage your heart health to help prevent these “signs” from happening:
~ Look at your belly! Carrying extra weight around your abdominal area increases our risk of heart disease. When there is increased abdominal fat, or visceral fat, it not only lies just under the skin’s surface but also surrounds your vital organs, which causes serious health problems. Not sure how your belly should look? Measure your waist in inches and divide it by your hip in inches. If your waist to hip ratio is more than .90 for men or more than .75 for women, changes need to be made.
~ Toning and strengthening your abdominal muscles are great exercises, but spot exercising will not reduce your abdominal fat. A healthy lifestyle with routine exercise and daily physical activity will help fight obesity as well as reduce your risk of diabetes and heart disease!
~ Don’t smoke and if you drink alcohol, keep it to a minimum.