We know that healthy habits are essential for overall good health and new research says this can keep our hearts happy.
Published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, research suggests seniors – those over 65 – who partake in healthy habits (drinking in moderation, exercise and not smoking) can reduce their risk of heart failure.
Heart failure refers to the heart’s inability to pump blood properly throughout the body.
The study was conducted with 4,490 men and women age 65 and over. Prior to the study, the participants showed no signs of heart failure.
For nearly 22 years, participants’ diet, walking habits, leisure activity, exercise intensity, alcohol use, smoking habits, weight, height, waist circumference and other heart-indicators were tracked and monitored. During that time about 30% of the participants developed heart failure.
The findings revealed that walking briskly and participating in leisure activities could lower heart failure by 26 percent and 22 percent respectively.
Researchers further noted that the intensity in activity doesn’t have to be high. They found reduction in risk of heart failure in those who exercised moderately as well. This means that seniors can help boost heart health with minimal effort still well within their means.
Other factors they tracked for – alcohol, smoking, weight etc. – when kept low or to a minimum also helped reduce the risk of heart failure.