Do you know what the leading cause of death is right now in the US? Unless you’ve already looked at the data, the information will surprise you.
Naturally, your thoughts drift to horrible diseases or nasty accidents. Most of you will know the stat that one in two people will get cancer at some point in their lives, so perhaps this is the number one cause of death?
Well, accidents and cancer are both up there in the top five, as is our old friend COVID-19.
Furthermore, according to information from some of the top medical malpractice attorneys in the country, medical errors account for around 10% of all deaths. Nevertheless, the leading cause of death is something far more common – and far more avoidable.
That’s right, heart disease accounts for more deaths than anything else in the US right now, according to data from the CDC.
Perhaps it’s no surprise that this goes hand in hand with the outrageously high obesity rate in the country. Weight gain and obesity are some of the main reasons people develop heart disease, which can lead to all sorts of heart problems, culminating in a deadly heart attack.
While this all seems like a lot of doom and gloom, there is light at the end of the tunnel.
I wrote a longevity book called Life is Long which helps people to protect their health and live longer.
I love to help people to live their happiest and healthiest lives.
With this in mind I put together this guide on how to protect yourself from heart disease – the leading cause of death!
Very few people will be genetically predisposed to heart disease. It’s something you develop based on your lifestyle habits.
So, with a few simple tips, you can avoid developing this disease.
You can avoid the number one cause of death in the US, possibly extending your lifespan and living a much healthier life.
Here’s what you should do to avoid heart disease.
Being overweight or obese can lead to heart disease because of what happens inside your body. When you carry too much excess fat in your body, some of the fat cells can start clogging up your blood vessels. This can lead to a whole host of heart complications, including heart disease. The chances of you suffering a heart attack will increase when your arteries are clogged up like this.
Consequently, maintaining a healthy weight will stop all of this from happening. Defining a healthy weight is actually a lot harder than it seems. In the past, doctors have used the BMI scale to determine what is considered overweight or obese. However, it’s proven to be a broken scale as people with a lot of muscle will end up falling into the overweight category despite being very fit. Instead, waist circumference is probably the better tool. If your waist is above 35 inches (women) or 40 inches (men) you are at an increased risk of heart disease because you may be carrying too much belly fat.
Thankfully, staying in shape and maintaining a healthy weight is relatively simple. All you have to do are these two things:
Exercising for 30 minutes a day, at least 3 times a week, while eating a healthy diet, will help you stay in good physical shape, dropping the risk of heart disease.
There are many unhealthy habits that will increase your chances of developing heart disease. Here are three that will be particularly bad for you:
The tobacco and chemicals in cigarettes will cause all sorts of problems for your arteries and other blood vessels. Likewise, alcohol will impact your heart health – both directly and indirectly. From an indirect perspective, alcohol is highly calorific and can cause excessive weight gain, increasing the risk of heart disease. It’s a similar thing when binge eating; you consume fatty foods that are terrible for your health, filling your body with all sorts of junk that can cause health complications. Fatty foods are likely to increase your cholesterol, which may mean your arteries thicken and become clogged, causing heart disease.
Cut out these bad habits and you will lower the chances of contracting heart disease. Again, it’s not a massive thing to ask. All you have to do is quit smoking, drink less alcohol, and avoid binge eating all the time. You can still enjoy a Mcdonald’s or a drink now and then, just ensure they aren’t regular daily occurrences.
Stress is yet another thing that can lead to heart disease. Once more, it may have a direct and indirect impact on your health. Directly, stress could cause an increase in blood pressure. Certainly, when you’re stressed, your blood pressure is likely to go up for a short period until the stress passes by. So, if you are constantly stressed, it’s possible that this can lead to a constant spike in your blood pressure.
Having high blood pressure is a problem, and you will find a few tips later on how to deal with it. For now, you should focus on managing your stress levels and finding healthy ways to relax.
The keyword is healthy.
Unfortunately, too many people will look at unhealthy ways for how to lower stress levels. For example, they turn to the bad habits listed earlier! This is where stress can indirectly increase your heart disease risk as it makes you do these bad habits that cause numerous heart health concerns.
As mentioned above, high blood pressure can lead to heart disease. This is because it can damage your arteries, meaning less blood flows to your heart. When less blood is flowing through your arteries, it means less oxygen is also flowing. Thus, you want to do everything you can to avoid high blood pressure.
Start by visiting your doctor for a health screening so they can take a blood pressure reading. If you’re too busy or are afraid of the doctor for whatever reason, you can buy blood pressure kits to use at home. Upon doing the test, you will have two different numbers: a high one and a low one. The low number is your blood pressure when your heart is at rest, while the higher one is the pressure in your blood vessels when your heart pumps blood. As a result, your blood pressure is usually presented as higher number/lower number mmHg.
If your blood pressure is extremely high, you may need medication to reduce it. Finding out where you currently stand is a great way to take action. You can reduce your blood pressure naturally by doing some of the things we’ve already discussed, such as:
Additionally, cutting down on your sodium and caffeine consumption can also help to lower your blood pressure. If your current blood pressure readings are normal, you should still do all of these things to prevent it from getting any higher!
Take action and do what you can to void the number one cause of death: heart disease! After all, heart disease is avoidable! Reduce your risk of contracting heart disease by following the steps listed above. And explore more health protecting tips in my bestselling book: Life is Long.