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Your vascular system, otherwise known as the circulatory system, is one of the most important parts of your body. It is made up of all the veins, arteries, and capillaries that carry blood, oxygen, and nutrients throughout the body. Without these blood vessels, the body could not function, as they also have an essential part in maintaining the digestive system, respiratory system, urinary system, and temperature regulation.
For this reason, it is essential that you look after your vascular health. Vascular disease affects a huge number of people worldwide, with over 8.5 million people in the US alone suffering from peripheral arterial disease. The conditions associated with vascular disease can cause a huge range of symptoms and ailments. They can damage your arteries, disrupt your blood flow, and damage tissue, nerves and muscles that rely on healthy blood supply. These diseases can also cause chronic pain, reduced mobility, and ulceration of the skin. There are distinctions between arterial vs venous ulcers, but they have many similar causes and triggers.
If you want to take charge of your physical wellbeing and enjoy a healthy body well into old age, it’s important to follow good habits. To help you out, here are four tips to reduce your risk of vascular disease.
It should come as no surprise to learn than people who smoke regularly are at far greater risk of a huge number of different health problems, and vascular disease is no different. Smoking has been directly linked to reduced blood flow, furring of arteries, thickening of blood, and atherosclerosis – the hardening of arteries caused by a buildup of plaque.
If you smoke even the slightest amount, one of the best things you can do for your health is to quit. It will not only turn your vascular health around, but will also improve your fitness, mental health, and physical appearance.
Smoking is an addictive habit, so quitting is not as easy as just throwing around your cigarettes. It can take time to give up the addiction, particularly if you’ve been smoking for years. You might need to take it slow, gradually reducing your intake until you reach zero. Patches and nicotine gum can be helpful, as can replacement habits like vaping. As well as vastly improving your health, quitting the expensive cigarettes will also make a huge impact on your bank balance.
Eat a healthy diet
Your diet is one of the biggest contributors to your overall health, and the things you put into your body determine what you get out of it. Eating a blanched diet full of healthy foods can help you reduce your blood pressure and cholesterol as well as reducing the risk of issues like diabetes.
Try to eat plenty of fresh frit and vegetables as well as a mix of carbohydrates, proteins and healthy fats. Limit the unhealthy takeaways and fried foods, and try to cut down on the amount of caffeine and alcohol you consume. Staying hydrated is also key, so strive to drink at least eight glasses of water per day. Your body will thank you for it in the long run.
Taking part in regular physical activity can greatly reduce your risk of vascular disease as it helps to manage blood pressure and reduce cholesterol. Exercise also lowers your risk of being overweightor obese, which can in turn lead to conditions like high blood pressure and diabetes which impact greatly on vascular health.
If you’re not a fitness fanatic, start slow, with 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercise each day. This can be anything from a brisk walk to a swim in the local pool. Try to choose activities that you find enjoyable, as this will make it more likely that you stick with it. It can take time to build up a base level of fitness, but one you push past the initial discomfort it will become easier and easier. Before long, going for your morning run or evening pilates class will be a regular habit.
Get regular health checkups
The best way to know how healthy your vascular system is, is to get a checkup from a qualified medical professional. Once you book an appointment with your doctor, they will be able to check your blood pressure, cholesterol, and any other factors that put you at risk of developing vascular disease. They will be able to identify the best course of action for you to reduce your risk as well as spotting any red flags and signs of poor health.
These are just some of the tips to help reduce your risk of vascular disease. Talk with your doctor or medical professional for more ideas and treatments that will work specifically for you.
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