Lose Weight for a Healthy HeartPosted: June 22, 2012 in Obesity Medicine by Craig Primack MD FACP
As you lose weight in Chandler and Scottsdale, chances are it won’t be long before you start experiencing the many health benefits that a healthy weight provides. These benefits range from an improved mood to reduced risk for diseases like diabetes. However, none of the health benefits are quite as sweet as having a healthy heart.
To have a healthy heart, many seemingly separate aspects of your health need to work together. This includes your blood pressure and cholesterol levels, both health factors that are commonly affected by excess weight. When you carry excess weight you force your heart to work harder than necessary, increasing your chance of experiencing a stroke or heart attack. Overworking your heart also makes it difficult for you to engage in simple activities like walking up the stairs or playing with your kids.
Losing weight can improve your quality of life and your quality of health. By keeping on track with your weight loss program you can experience dramatic heart health benefits.
Here are a few other ways that you can improve your heart health as you lose weight:
- Relax: According to the American Heart Association, chronic stress can cause damage to your artery walls. In order to improve your heart health, it is important to take a break, release stress and enjoy some you time.
- Try a Cardio Workout: Running around doing errands doesn’t provide the same heart health benefits that going for a relaxing jog can. As you lose weight, engaging in cardiovascular activities will become easier. Work your way up by starting with jumping jacks or going for a relaxing walk after work.
- Eliminate Added Sugar: For both your weight loss efforts and your heart health, it is wise to eliminate added sugars from your diet. Sugar is added to a lot of processed foods, so it is easy to eat upwards of 15 teaspoons a day if you are not careful. The American Heart Association recommends that women only consume 5 teaspoons of added sugar regularly, and men consume no more than 9 teaspoons.
- Reduce Alcohol Consumption: Despite anything you have heard about alcohol being good for your health, when you are overweight these health effects are minimal. Drinking puts you at risk of gaining more weight through added calories and reduced inhibition against your favorite foods. Whether you are imbibing beer or cocktails, most drinks cost more than 100 calories per serving, and so is not a healthy part of any weight loss plan.
For more tips about improving your heart health as you lose weight, contact Dr. Primack or Dr. Ziltzer.