Heart Health: Can Being A Couch Potato Increase Risk Of Heart Disease?

Having trouble getting off that couch? You could be putting yourself at a greater risk for heart disease!

Most of us have heard the term couch potato, but rarely have we associated the word with heart disease. If you are trying to decide if you are couch potato or not, here are some general examples. Your seating area in front of the TV is where you spend the majority of your time. You know every show from morning to night that crosses your television screen. You try to remember the last time you exercised but your thoughts are interrupted by the brief memory of driving around the parking lot four times to find a closer parking space. You have a mini fridge located next to your couch. The only thing you worry about losing is your remote. I think you get the picture. It can safely be confirmed that yes, you are a couch potato. The question to be concerned about is "does this mean you have an increased risk of heart disease?"

There are many contributing factors to heart disease. Let's take a look at a few of them.

1. You eat fatty and high cholesterol foods.

2. You are overweight and your weight seems to be increasing.

3. You start feeling more sluggish and have frequent dizzy spells.

4. You visit your doctor's office, and you are diagnosed with high blood pressure and or diabetes.

You do not have to have all of the above to get heart disease. Family history can have a major effect on your chances of getting the disease. However, if you do have any of the above issues, then you are putting yourself at a greater risk for heart disease by staying on that couch. It's time to do something about it. Now that I have your attention lets look at the 3 G's of lowering the risk of heart disease.

1. Get Ready!

Consult with a physician before starting any exercise or diet program. Read Read Read all that you can about heart disease and the risk factors. Knowledge will give you what you need to stay motivated, and will allow you to understand the disease better.

2. Get Moving!

If your activity level is very low then start slow. While sitting on the couch take 5 minutes out of every half hour show and do some stretches. Shake out your wrists, wiggle your arms, move your feet up and down. Turn the television off and take some time to just relax in the quietness of your home. Take some cleansing breaths. When you have confirmed it with your doctor get yourself moving with an exercise video or even better a nice walk. This is a great exercise and can be very refreshing. Park further away from the store and use stairs instead of an elevator.

3. Get Healthy!

Redo that grocery list of yours. Eat plenty of healthy foods and drink lots of water. Speak to a dietician; your doctor should be able to recommend one to you. He or she will be able to help you set up a menu that will suit your daily needs. Have your cholesterol levels checked regularly.

By now you know that you cannot continue the couch potato lifestyle. It may not cause the disease directly, but it could cause a lot of other problems that put you more at risk. Remember that your heart needs to be nurtured. You will feel so much better to get off that couch and start living your life. After a few days of regular exercise and a healthy diet you should start to see a difference in your overall energy. Be confident that you're doing what is necessary to take care of your heart. Remember the three G's and take care of YOU!

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