3 Helpful Tips For Reducing Your Risk of Developing Circulatory Issues

Jul 25, 2022
3 Helpful Tips For Reducing Your Risk of Developing Circulatory Issues
Want to know more about protecting your heart, brain, and kidneys from disease? How about a strategy that also keeps your muscles strong and your joints healthy? Reducing your risk of circulatory disorders does all that and so much more.

The human body is one of the most remarkable examples of orderly and effective teamwork, in that all parts and systems work together to benefit the whole. And there’s not a single cell in your entire body that doesn’t rely on a healthy circulatory system to get its job done.

Dr. Ghiath Mikdadi and Dr. Farid Zayed are board-certified interventional cardiologists who lead the team at the Heart Clinic of Hammond in Hammond and Amite, Louisiana. 

Here, they explain why they care just as much about your circulatory system as they do your heart muscle, and provide easy-to-follow tips for keeping it healthy. 

Understanding the circulatory system

The circulatory (vascular) system includes a vast network of vessels that transport blood throughout your body. Arteries carry oxygen-rich blood away from the heart to your body, and veins return the used blood to the heart and lungs for an oxygen refill. Capillaries connect with veins and arteries to move blood to and from organs and tissue structures.  

Although your heart keeps your circulatory system going by pumping blood continuously over your lifetime, it relies on healthy arteries, veins, and capillaries to get the job done. When a breakdown, blockage, or disorder affects any part of your circulatory system, your health — and your heart — can suffer. 

Thus, preventing heart disease starts with protecting your circulatory system. Fortunately, the habits you adopt to keep your blood vessels healthy also support optimal heart health.

Three tips for reducing your risk of circulatory problems

You can’t prevent every illness that comes your way, but you can significantly reduce your risk of developing new or worsening vascular disease by taking these three major steps:

1. Know and manage your risk factors

Conditions that compromise your circulatory health include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Uncontrolled diabetes
  • Excess body weight
  • Physical inactivity
  • Poor sleep (quantity and quality)
  • Tobacco use (including smokeless)
  • Unhealthy cholesterol levels
  • Poor nutritional intake

Many of these issues are directly related to everyday decisions you control regarding diet, exercise, and other lifestyle activities and choices.

Rather than considering a temporary weight loss plan, try establishing a lifelong pattern of healthy eating, weight management, and physical activity that fits both your personality and your lifestyle. 

If you don’t like to sweat, choose an activity like swimming or walking instead of running or high-intensity cardio. To tempt your tastebuds, take a cooking class that embraces natural flavors over added sugars, salt, and heavy oils.

2. Prioritize consistent, restful sleep

Protecting your vascular health by getting a good night’s sleep may seem way too easy. However, your body takes advantage of the downtime to rebuild tissue, drop your blood pressure, metabolize various hormones, and complete other health-related tasks.

Adults of all ages need at least 7 hours of restful sleep each night. Less than that increases your risk of diabetes, hypertension, weight gain, heart disease, and heart attack.

If you’re struggling to fall asleep or stay asleep, our team can help. You may need to adjust your routine and limit exercise or heavy meals close to bedtime, or you may want to consider taking part in a sleep study to rule out conditions that interfere with restful sleep, such as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). 

Besides interrupting your rest, this common sleep disorder can increase your heart attack and stroke risk, too.

3. Schedule routine health screenings

Many people put off basic health screening until their 40s or 50s. Unfortunately, elevated blood pressure, high cholesterol, and other conditions that compromise your vascular health usually begin long before middle age. They also tend to remain “silent,” or without obvious symptoms, until the disease is already more advanced. 

Scheduling routine screening exams that include a blood pressure reading and baseline lab studies such as cholesterol checks during your 20s and 30s can catch problems before they threaten your heart health. Our specialists can also evaluate your risk factors and help you develop a lifelong prevention strategy that evolves with your changing needs.

For more information about the cardiac screening services at the Heart Clinic of Hammond, call your nearest location today or use our easy online booking feature to schedule a visit any time.