Inactive or sedentary individuals double their risk of suffering a heart attack or stroke compared to those who are regularly active. The good news is that 80% of heart disease and strokes can be prevented through lifestyle, diet and exercise. As such, it is vitally important that people implement healthy foods rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, such as Lucky Star canned fish products, and add some exercise to their daily routine.
Almost 40% of South Africans are physically inactive, which increases the chance of developing diseases like high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, certain cancers and cardiovascular disease. It is also linked to depression, anxiety, stress and poor ageing. Ten people suffer from a stroke in South Africa every hour, while 225 lose their lives to heart disease every day. The price of inactivity is indeed staggering.
Consider your lifestyle and diet
When somebody suffers from a stroke, every second counts. Strokes are increasingly becoming a challenge as they not only cause death but can severely impact the quality of life for survivors. What’s more, strokes do not just affect the elderly, but also those in middle age and even children.
“Therefore, it is highly crucial that people, regardless of their age, seriously consider their lifestyle and diet to reduce the risk of strokes,” states Professor Pamela Naidoo from the Heart & Stroke Foundation South Africa.
everyone is encouraged to get active and join the movement in combating strokes with Lucky Star. Says Prof Naidoo, “Getting active should become a regular habit and a way of life. Any activity that gets the heart pumping faster counts. Try brisk walking, cycling, going to the gym, swimming, dancing, gardening or hiking. Or just play an active game with the kids and family pets.”
She continues, “Choosing healthier food options, like Heart and Stroke Foundation-approved Lucky Star pilchards, will benefit our memory and brain function, as well as our mood. Omega-3 fatty acids are also crucial for brain growth and development in infants. It has also been shown to lower bad cholesterol and high blood pressure while raising ‘good’ cholesterol levels, which can reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes.”
Lucky Star is renowned for its affordability and providing easy, quick ways to create healthy meals for the family. Find some delicious, nutritious and heart-healthy Lucky Star recipes here.
Make time to move
Being more physically active does not mean setting aside two hours each day to visit the gym. Doing mild physical activity can do wonders to get the blood flowing and the heart pumping. In fact, doing some physical activity is better than doing nothing at all.
“Find a friend or family member to exercise with, which should make it more fun. Small changes like opting to walk instead of driving or taking the stairs instead of the lift can help get you moving more than before. If you’re lucky enough to live close to a beach or park, throw on those trainers and go for a light jog. The fresh air will also do so much good. Just remember to start slowly and set realistic goals,” concludes Prof. Naidoo