Too much alcohol, for instance, can weaken your heart, increase your blood pressure, and cause weight gain. Caffeine, on the other hand, might lead to problems with your heartbeat.
Ask your doctor if you’re allowed to drink alcohol and coffee, and follow the limits they advise you on.
Choose Heart-Healthy Foods
Of course, you also need to take care of your diet. As much as possible, avoid consuming foods that are high in saturated fats, sodium or salt, cholesterol, and refined sugar.
Instead, focus on the following heart-healthy foods:
- Whole grains
- Low-fat dairy products
- Skinless poultry
- Nuts and seeds
Remember that fruits and veggies should fill up about half of your plate for each meal.
With your condition, friends and loved ones may advise you to “take it easy”, but despite how well-meaning their suggestions are, remember that regular physical activity is one of the best strategies to manage heart failure.
Come to think of it, exercise helps a lot in maintaining healthy blood pressure, weight, and cholesterol levels. The general rule is to have at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise per day for at least 5 days a week.
Of course, you need to exercise caution. Talk to your doctor first about how much physical activity your heart can take. They will help you come up with an exercise regimen that will strengthen your body without compromising your heart’s health.
Studies have shown that stress is linked to a higher risk of heart attack. For this reason, find ways to effectively manage stress and other strong emotions such as anger.
Doctors emphasize the need to take 10 to 15 minutes daily to do reflection and deep breathing exercises. Talking to your friends and family will also help.
Finally, if the stress becomes too much, don’t hesitate to contact your healthcare provider for possible counseling or therapy.