With a hectic work schedule, taking care of your health usually takes a backseat. You spend more time in the office than anywhere else, so there is usually no time to look after yourself.
When you have a busy work life, it can take a toll on your heart in particular.
This is why it is important to find out ways to keep your heart healthy during office hours. The good news is that there are many ways to do this. Here is a look at some of the things you can do to maintain your heart health while you are at work.
(Note: This content is prepared under the guidance of Dr. Zainulabedin Hamdulay – Leading Cardiac Surgeon in Mumbai, India)
Take the Stairs
Most people head straight for the elevator when they reach their office building, sometimes even when they are just a floor above.
Why not take the stairs? It is a great way to get a little workout and it will do wonders for your heart.
Getting, and staying, active is an excellent way to lower your risk for developing heart disease. Taking the stairs instead of the elevator is a small but effective way to stay active during office hours. In fact, this is one of the first steps you should take to maintain your heart health while you are in the office.
Pack a Healthy Lunch
Do you often get a packet of something from the snack bar at work for lunch? Or eat at a nearby restaurant? Keep in mind that all this will do a lot of damage to your heart.
Pack a healthy lunch from home instead. A sandwich or a salad, or if you have time, a simple pasta dish – these will fill you up, boost your energy levels and help keep your heart healthy.
Also, try and carry heart-healthy snacks like nuts, including almonds, pecans and walnuts, for those times you feel a little peckish – they will do wonders. A healthy diet is important for your heart health, so try and eat healthy even if it is office hours.
Avoid Sitting in One Place for Too Long
One of the biggest threats to your heart is inactivity. It can be easy to sit in one place for extended periods without realizing it.
It is important to make sure that you stay active in some way while you are at the office. Stand up every hour and do some basic activity to get your blood circulation going.
Your heart needs this. Take a short walk around the office or do a few mild exercises near your desk if you can. All these small things can help in big ways to keep heart diseases away.
Your smoking buddies are leaving to go outside for a cigarette – do not follow them. Instead, kick the habit. Smoking is one of the most dangerous things for your heart, so you need to avoid tobacco.
If you smoke or partake in other tobacco products, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), American Heart Association (AHA) as well as the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) recommend that you give up the habit.
Also, make sure that you stay away from second-hand smoke. This will not only benefit your heart, but your overall health as well.
Eat Dark Chocolate
If you have a sweet tooth, you will love this one! Keep a stash of dark chocolate in one of the shelves of your desk.
Dark chocolate contains flavonoids that are good for your heart. These compounds help in reducing inflammation and lowering your risk for heart disease.
If you feel like munching on a small snack or have a sugar craving, get a piece of dark chocolate. You do not have to feel guilty or worried by indulging a little – just make sure that it is dark chocolate.
Take Small Breaks
As mentioned earlier, getting up from your seat is important. This is one of the steps you can take to make sure that you keep your heart healthy even while you are at the office.
You should remember to take small breaks in between working hours to relax both your body and mind. Stress is one of the major risk factors for heart problems, so it is important that you take time to relieve stress and tension at the workplace.
Go to a quiet spot and do some breathing exercises or just close your eyes and relax. You will feel great when you go back to your desk and it is better for your heart too.
Brew a cup of black or green tea during coffee breaks. According to the American Heart Association (AHA), drinking 1 to 3 cups of tea daily may help in reducing your risk of heart problems.
For instance, it is linked to lower rates of heart attacks and angina. So when you get up from your desk to get a mug of coffee, brew yourself a cup of tea instead.
You can still have your coffee – just make sure that you get a cup or two of tea too.
Take a Walk
You should take some time out every day to go for a short walk. You can do it during your lunch break or whenever you feel like you need a break from your desk.
Even a 5-minute walk can work wonders in clearing your head and lowering your stress levels. As you already know, this is good for both your heart as well as your overall health.
You should try to make sure that you get a 30-minute walk daily so that you can improve your physical and mental health.
As you can see, taking few simple steps during office hours can help in maintaining your heart health. Heart problems are common these days, but the thing is that they are preventable. You need to take active part in making sure that your heart is always in good condition and works as it should.
Note: Images used in this article are copyright free & used from Freepik