Inactivity has become a way of life for too many people, just as heart disease has and that’s not a coincidence. Your tendency to recline on the sofa or spend hours at the computer directly contributes to the risk of heart disease by hiking your risk of diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity. Unfortunately, being sedentary can nearly double your risk of a heart attack.
Also, the impact of stress on your heart is often overlooked, but it is a major threat. First, when people are under stress, they often tend to eat the wrong things, stop exercising and overindulge in alcohol, which are all bad for your heart. But stress causes other damage as well. When you’re under stress, your body produces unhealthy hormones and chemicals, including cortisol. Over time, these substances contribute to the formation of plaque in your coronary arteries and increase your risk of blood clots.
Looking for a great stress buster? Try exercise. When you exercise, your body releases endorphins, “feel good” chemicals that are natural mood elevators. With exercise, you not only reduce your stress, but prevent heart disease as well.
I’m Steve Taylor, Physical Therapist of Southern Physical and Occupational Therapy Services
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