Heart Health Travel Guide: How To Be Heart Smart On Vacation
 
heart health

Heart Health Travel Guide: How To Be Heart Smart On Vacation

By Tulika Bhogaraju

Whether it's a fun road-trip, a romantic getaway or a family vacation to the beach, travel always helps put a heart at ease. But it also makes managing daily heart health routines a tad bit harder. That's why we're showing the best ways to care for your heart on-the-go, so you can kick back and enjoy a worry-free vacation. Just plan ahead and follow our simple tips to keep your ticker going strong all holiday long.

  1. Keep an eye on your diet: A healthy diet is the best weapon against heart disease, so when you're on-the-go, ensure that your body is getting the right nutrients it needs to be healthy. This includes eating a variety of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, poultry and fish, and nuts and legumes. If you're following a certain diet back home, it's best to stick to it even when you're traveling. But if you're planning to switch up your diet for a few days, avoid consuming trans fats, sodium, red meat, sweets and sugar-sweetened beverages. Trans fat is especially bad because it clogs your arteries by raising your bad cholesterol levels (LDL) and lowering your good cholesterol levels (HDL). By cutting them from your diet, you can improve the blood flow throughout your body.

  2. Stay active: A sedentary lifestyle is one of the 5 top risk factors (along with high blood pressure, unhealthy lipid levels, smoking, and obesity) for heart disease. Regular exercise reduces the bad cholesterol in your body and helps keep heart attacks at bay, so find ways to get a good workout even when you're on vacation. You could use the hotel gym or pool to burn some calories. You could even give yoga a go or take a long walk around the place you're visiting. It's always good to stay active and keep your heart pumping.

  3. Limit the alcohol: It's hard to avoid alcohol when you're taking a much-deserved vacation, but too much alcohol can harm your heart in the long run. Excess alcohol can increase your blood pressure and add to the calories, so try sticking to a drink or two a day. It's also important to hydrate yourself to balance the vital electrolytes in your body that play a key role in heart rhythm.

  4. Blow off steam not smoke: Vacation is the time to escape the daily grind and blow off some steam. So why not use this break from stress to give up smoking? Tobacco smoke damages blood vessels, increases blood pressure and lowers your HDL cholesterol. It also increases your risk of having a heart attack. Kicking the habit while you're taking a break from your usual routine will make it easier as you won't be dealing with the normal triggers that make you reach out for a cigarette.

  5. Know your numbers: Get routine blood tests before you travel, to measure your cholesterol and blood sugar levels. This can help you monitor your heart health as well as the food you eat. If any of the tests raise any red flags, consult your doctor and discuss what your options are so you can have a safe, stress-free trip.

Disclaimer: This publication / editorial / article is for information and awareness purpose and does not constitute or imply an endorsement, sponsorship or recommendation of any Products. Please consult your doctor/ healthcare practitioner before starting any diet, medication or exercise.