How to Take Care of Your Heart in Your 30s
Allison Bush | June 11, 2014
Make sure you’re getting enough sleep because the quantity and quality of your sleep can impact your heart health. The American Heart Association recommends adults get six to eight hours of sleep per night.
Be careful with birth control
Many types of contraceptives, but especially oral contraceptives, can cause an increase in your blood pressure. If you can safely use an alternative method that doesn’t put your health at risk, consider the advantages. Remember that cigarette smoking and oral birth control use can increase the risk of serious cardiovascular disease.
The AHA recommends 40 minutes of exercise three to four times per week, according to its new guidelines. Strength training a few times a week will boost your metabolism, which is helpful since your metabolism will start to slow down at this point. Making time for exercise can be difficult, so try to find something you actually enjoy doing - whether it be dancing or jogging.
Eat a healthy diet
Now is the time to start limiting your intake of processed foods. It’s helpful to train your taste buds now to enjoy healthy foods to prevent excess weight gain that can increase your heart risk as you age. Essential vitamins, minerals and other nutrients, such as iron, folic acid, calcium, potassium, B vitamins, vitamin D, fiber and healthy omega-3 fats, can help ensure good health in our 30s and beyond.
It’s important to try to reduce your level of stress at this time. Long-term stress causes an increase in heart rate and blood pressure that may damage the artery walls. It can also hinder your efforts toward losing weight. Commit to taking time to do something for yourself - whether it’s taking a relaxing bath or just having a few hours a day without checking your email.
If you’re still smoking in your 30s, you really need to stop. Quitting smoking is one of the most beneficial ways to improve your health. Smoking reduces blood circulation and narrows blood vessels, depriving the body of oxygen and increasing the risk for heart disease.