Cardiovascular disease affects around 50 per cent of people in the UK and is the world’s most common cause of death. But thanks to improvements in medicines and a better understanding of lifestyle measures, these statistics are starting to improve.
Standard therapies, such as statins, ACE inhibitors and low dose aspirin; or invasive procedures, such as coronary stenting or bypass surgery, reduce cardiovascular risk by around 30 per cent.
But following my five tips to ultimate heart health, including healthy lifestyle and targeted supplementation, can help reduce your risk of a cardiovascular disease by 60 - 70 per cent.
Five top tips to Ultimate Heart Health
1. Quit smoking
You can’t be healthy if you smoke, drink too much alcohol or use illegal drugs.
2. Sleep well
Get into a good quality sleep regime. Recent studies have proven that seven to eight hours of sleep every night is as good for your body as quitting smoking.
3. Eat healthily
My advice is to eat less and eat naturally. Evidence suggests we should reduce our total calorie intake and cut down on processed and packaged foods, especially those high in processed carbohydrates.
The best diet for good heart health is the Mediterranean diet, which includes: two to three portions of fruit, three to five servings of vegetables, olive oil, nuts, wholegrains, lean meat, eggs and dairy.
In 2014, Cambridge University published a meta-analysis involving 600,000 people, which proved there is no link between eating meat, eggs, dairy and heart disease.
Make sure you take part in at least three to five hours of exercise every week. Two thirds of this time should be aerobic exercise, such as swimming, while the rest should focus on resistance training and/or stretching exercises, such as yoga.
5. Be happy
The best medicine on the planet is happiness, with many studies showing a clear link between happiness and good overall health.
Top 3 Supplements for Heart Health
Evidence from the Nurses’ Health Study and the Male Physicians’ Trial showed that taking a high-quality multivitamin containing at least 400mcg of folic acid reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease by around 23 per cent.
2. Fish oils
Several well-conducted studies involving people with high risk of heart disease revealed that taking high dose fish oils can reduce cardiovascular events by 25 to 30 per cent.
3. Vitamin K2
Vitamin K2 improves the condition osteoporosis, and early studies suggest it may prevent calcified arteries. A dose of 180mcg daily is recommended to achieve optimum benefits.