Healthy heart tips after stent implantation
Lead a wholesome life, even after a coronary stent.
Healthy heart tips after a coronary stent
Coronary artery disease (CAD) can be treated effectively. You can help prevent your CAD from progressing by carefully following your doctor’s advice and making some lifestyle changes.
Chemicals in cigarettes may make it easier for plaque to build upon your artery walls. If you smoke, quitting is the single most important thing you can do to lower your risk of your CAD from progressing. Smoking also increases your heart rate and blood pressure, raising your risk of heart attack and stroke1. If you are ready to quit, ask your doctor for advice - he or she can recommend smoking cessation aids to help you kick the habit.
Maintain a Healthy Weight
Maintaining a healthy weight can help reduce the risk of CAD progressing. You can calculate your body mass index (BMI) to find out if you are at a healthy weight for you.
WHO identifies overweight when BMI is greater than or equal to 25; and obesity when BMI is greater than or equal to 30. BMI is defind as a persons weight in kg divided by square of his height in meter(kg/m2) 4.
While your BMI and waist circumference can be helpful tools to determine if you may be overweight, only a trained healthcare professional can assess your health status and risks. So be sure to ask your doctor what a healthy weight is for you.
Eat a Heart-Healthy Diet
Even small changes to your diet can make a big difference in your heart health. You can start with these simple steps but be sure to talk to your doctor before making any changes to your diet so you can develop a plan that is best for you.
- Eat more foods that contain whole grains.
- Add a variety of fruits and vegetables.
- Cut down on sugar and salt (sodium).
- Limit your consumption of high-fat foods, such as red meat, cheese, and baked goods.
- Reduce your consumption of bad fats, which can increase the amount of harmful LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) in your bloodstream and reduce the amount of beneficial HDL cholesterol. Bad fats include saturated and trans fats and are more likely to be solid at room temperatures, such as butter and solid shortening.
- Substitute bad fats with good ones that do not raise your LDL cholesterol levels and have health benefits when eaten in moderation. Good fats include monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which are more likely to be liquid at room temperatures, such as sunflower, soybean, corn, and olive oils.
Be More Active
A sedentary lifestyle increases your risk of coronary artery disease. So even if you cannot fit in regular workouts, try making activity a part of your daily life. By starting small, you will gradually build up your activity level, which may help whittle your waistline, control your blood pressure and cholesterol levels, and enhance your overall heart health.
Tips for Adding More Activity to Your Day
- Take frequent breaks throughout the day to stretch and walk.
- Do your regular household chores at a brisker pace.
- Park farther away from the door when running errands or get off the bus at an earlier stop to add more steps to your day.
- Take the stairs instead of the escalator or elevator.
- Plan more active entertainment. For example, go bowling or bike riding instead of watching a movie.
- Go for a brisk walk with friends or family after dinner.
Be sure to talk to your doctor before you start or resume any kind of exercise program.
Experiencing stress from time to time is a normal part of life. However, unmanaged stress can affect your overall health and have a negative impact on your heart2.
Simple Ways to Reduce Stress
- Laugh a Little. Research shows that laughter may help reduce stress, lower blood pressure, increase muscle relaxation and boost the immune system3. So make it a point to add laughter to your day - whether that means watching silly animal videos on the internet or meeting a funny friend for lunch.
- Take Time to Relax. From meditation to deep breathing exercises, there are several techniques to help relax your mind during times of stress. Find the technique that works best for you and stick with it.
- Keep a Stress Diary. Taking note of the things that cause you to stress can help you identify stressors - and find ways to avoid them in the future.
This is not a comprehensive list of activities and is only mere suggestions that a patient may do.
1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Health Effects of Cigarette Smoking. https://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/data_statistics/fact_sheets/health_effects/effects_cig_smoking/. Accessed October 20, 2016.
2. Cleveland Clinic. Stress and Heart Disease. https://my.clevelandclinic.org/services/heart/prevention/emotional-health/stress-relaxation/stress-management-your-heart. Accessed October 20, 2016.
3. Bennett MP, Zeller JM, Rosenberg L, McCann J. The effect of stress of mirthful laughter modifies natural killer cell activity. Altern Ther Health Med. 2003 Mar-Apr;9(2):38-45.
Disclaimer: The information presented here by Boston Scientific is for educational purposes only and does not recommend self-management of health issues. The information should not be treated as comprehensive and does not intend to provide diagnosis, treatment or any medical advice. Individual symptoms, situations, circumstances and results may vary. The information should not be used as a substitute for talking with your doctor. Please consult with a registered doctor regarding your condition and medical or health related diagnosis or treatment options. Any decision taken based on the information provided herein is not the responsibility of the company or the website.