Maintaining a healthy heart is crucial for a long life. Blood pressure, stress, and high cholesterol levels are just some of the many factors that can put your heart at risk. There are many ways to protect your heart, with a healthy diet and exercise being the front-runners.
And now, a recent study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine has revealed a simple trick you can do to maintain a strong, healthy heart – and have fun along the way!
Dancing helps improve heart health
The new research suggests that regular dancing can help lower your risk of heart disease. The study involved 48,000 people in the U.K. who completed questionnaires about their dancing and walking habits within the past month. Participants were over the age of 40 with no prior history of heart disease.
After an average 10-year follow-up, the researchers concluded that those who partook in moderate-intensity dancing had a lower risk of cardiovascular death. The risk of cardiovascular mortality was slightly lower in those who danced compared to those who walked, and the association was stronger in women than men.
It’s important to note that it is not necessarily dancing itself that resulted in fewer cardiovascular death outcomes. The dancing participants could be partaking in other healthy lifestyle habits promoting a strong heart.
Still, dancing on its own may offer great health benefits, like stress reduction, improved social connections, and a pleasant way to exercise.
So if you’re looking for a simple way to start improving your heart health, put on some tunes and get moving!
Other tips to improve heart health
Aside from dancing – and exercise in general – other recommendations to help improve heart health include eating whole grains, reducing salt intake, managing chronic health conditions such as diabetes, getting adequate sleep, reducing stress, maintaining a healthy weight, not smoking, minimizing alcohol consumption, avoiding processed food, cutting out saturated and trans fats, lowering cholesterol levels, eating more greens (and vegetables in general), and consuming plenty of fruit, too.
By incorporating these heart-healthy tips into your lifestyle, you can ensure your heart continues to beat for many more years to come.