Your risk for heart disease may be genetically linked. Still, you can proactively make choices to increase your chances for good health and longevity.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently shared Preventing Heart Disease: Healthy Living Habits, indicating that your lifestyle plays a large part in maintaining normal levels for blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar.

Smart lifestyle choices can lower your risk for heart disease and heart attack. To maintain heart health, incorporate beneficial habits including: eating a healthy diet; exercising regularly; not smoking; and limiting alcohol consumption.

Opt for a diet high in fresh fruits, vegetables, and low-fat proteins; while avoiding processed foods to maintain a healthy heart and body weight. Smart diet choices provide the nutrients and energy necessary for your body to function optimally.

Regular exercise is a great stress reducer, helping with weight control, muscle strength, and bone density. Even gentle exercise like yoga is good for your heart. Build a regular routine to reap the benefits of exercise.

Alcohol consumption leads to higher blood pressure. While abstinence is best for health, the CDC recommends a daily intake of no more than two drinks for men, and one drink for women. Alcohol is high in empty calories which provide no nutritional benefits.

What is the most important single act you can accomplish to promote a healthy heart? Quit smoking. Cigarette smoking increases your risk of heart disease. Kick your nicotine habit by gradually reducing your cravings.

Your doctor can help you review the options, including: nicotine gum, patches, and even hypnosis. Learn more:

Additional resources are available to assist with your goal of health and wellness. Contact a Community Resource Specialist of Sourcewise: (408) 350-3200, option 1.