You may be aware that, the risk of heart disease rises for everyone with age, but for women who’ve gone through menopause, their risk is higher than it was while in their pre-menopausal years.
A drop in the natural hormone estrogen, may be a factor in heart disease increase among post-menopausal women. Estrogen is believed to have a protective effect on the inner layer of artery wall, helping to keep blood vessels flexible and protected from inflammation and vascular damage.
However, there are just few things you need to do to stay heart healthy even after menopause.
Regular exercise helps in lowering your risk factors for heart disease by keeping your blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol and body weight on target. Aim for about 30 minutes a day, at least 5 days a week. Do activities that you enjoy and make them part of your daily routine.
Healthy eating is key to a healthy heart. Many foods can help keep your heart to function at its best, when incorporated into a balanced and heart-healthy diet. Choose to eat from a variety of high fiber fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legume. Fatty fish, nuts, seeds, fat-free or low-fat dairy products are also excellent options.
Know your numbers
Regular heart screening must be done to maintain a healthy heart. More so, if you have a family history of heart disease. Your body weight, blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol all contribute to your heart health.
Be mindful of your stress levels.
Depression, anxiety and stress are more common among postmenopausal women. This could be partially due to bothersome symptoms such as hot flashes and disrupted sleep. A stressful lifestyle can worsen things like high blood pressure and overall heart health. De- stress in healthy ways—through exercise, prayer, yoga and a good night’s sleep.
Instead of being stressed, depressed and anxious try to accept this time in your life by eating right, exercising regularly and socializing with friends.
Menopause is the right time to take diligent care of yourself and your heart.