Heart attacks are just not age restricted anymore. Nowadays, young adult at 30 are having heart attacks. Stress, sedentary lifestyle and total dependence on fast foods take the blame! Well you can always stop these factors from affecting your heart health, by just listening to your body. Your body needs exercise, your mind wants complete relaxation and your stomach always cries out for nutritious food. Actually, these needs are basic and can be fulfilled. Your heart is precious and you have to take care of it!

Start your day with meditation and exercise and a healthy breakfast. Here are some easy exercises you can do at home or at the gym. Talk with your trainer and ask him or her to include more cardio workouts in your fitness schedule.

10 Simple Exercises for a Healthy Heart

You must know how running, jogging and skipping can improve your heart rate and help you stay active. Well these activities can be incorporated into daily exercise to add variety to your fitness regime and reduce boredom. So why wait, put on your headphones and let’s pump it up!

Some exercises are good for your heart but it is hard on your body. So you have to strike a balance by doing those exercises which are beneficial for both your heart and body. Here are some easy heart-friendly exercises you can practice daily-

training-intervals

  1. Interval Training: This is the best exercise to reduce the risk of heart disease, control blood sugar and keep your body weight in check. Interval training is fairly simple; you have to combine short bursts of high-intensity exercise with big breaks for active recovery. If you love walking, alternate three minutes of normal walking with one minute of walking at a brisk pace. This exercise is effective because the constant raising and lowering of heart rate improves the vascular function to a great extent.

 swimming-non-impact

  • Nonimpact Sports: Playing a sport is always fun and it keeps you active. Sports like rowing swimming, cross-country skiing, walking with poles involves a lot of muscle activity. The heart has to work harder to fuel all the muscles, so in the process the heart becomes strong. Adding intervals while practicing these nonimpact sports can make it an ideal whole body workout.

 weight-training

 

  1. Weight Training: This is another type of interval training. Weight training also helps to improve your heart rate during repetitions and helps you to recover in between the sets. Weight training helps to make the muscles really strong and this helps to reduce the burden on the heart. Always use free weights to involve more muscles, especially your core muscles. Weight training also improves balance.

 surya-namaskar

  1. Yoga: The world swears by yoga today! What is the reason behind the widespread popularity? Yoga is a great way to stay in shape and improve flexibility. It also makes your blood vessels more elastic and thereby promoting a healthy heart.

 

The suryanamaskar or Sun Salutation is a complete yoga exercise in itself. It combines many yogic postures into a full body work out. Repeat 5-10 times for effective results.

 

low-impact-aerobics

  1. Aerobics: Aerobics is a steady physical activity that involves large muscle groups. Aerobics help your heart and lungs to function properly and improves the body’s ability to utilize oxygen. Aerobic exercise also helps to decrease your heart rate and blood pressure and normalize the breathing pattern. You can also try zumba and aerobics together to make your workout interesting.

 stair-climbing

 

  1. Climb the Stairs: If you really want to improve your heart rate just use the stairs instead of the elevator. You actually don’t need to run on the treadmill if you can climb up and down the stairs several times until you start sweating. Make sure you run up and down the entire stairwell to avoid dizziness. If you are short of time, climbing the stairs can help you squeeze some physical activity before you enter office.

mountain-climber-exercise

  1. Mountain Climber: This exercise is not tough as it sounds!  Just follow these steps-
  • Start down on your hands and knees.
  • Bring your right foot forward to your chest and keep your left leg straight.
  • Engage your core muscles while doing this exercise and quickly switch your legs.
  • Perform 15-20 repetitions.

 

squat-jumps

  1. Squat Jump: Squat jump not only improves the heart rate it also tones your legs. Here is the technique-

 

  • Start with a normal bodyweight squat (Keep the heels on the ground while bending the hips and knees until the thighs are parallel to the floor.)
  • Jump immediately from this squatting position and extend your arms overhead.
  • Do 15-20 reps.

 

skaters-lunge

  1. Skater’s Lunge: While performing this exercise you should look like a skater moving on thin ice. Here is the simple strategy-
  • Stretch your legs a bit wider than shoulder-width apart, point your toes forward.
  • Now lower into an athletic stance and slide to the left into a side lunge. Keep your hands on the left knee.
  • Then shift quickly on the right side, and keep your hands on the right knee.
  • Go back and forth for 45-60 seconds.

Tip: Remove your shoes and keep the socks on to glide smoothly.

 

 step-up-workout

  1. Step Up: Athletes and dancers swear by step up. You can do it too! Here is how-
  • Find an elevated surface that is sturdy. It can be a bench.
  • Keep your right foot on the bench and rise up until the left leg is straight
  • Put down your leg
  • Use your right hamstring and glute to perform this exercise.
  • Do 10 reps and then switch legs.
  • Increase your speed gradually to improve your heart rate.

 

 

You can add your own variations to the above mentioned exercises. For instance, you can use weights while doing step up. If you want to practice more cardio exercises, you can look up http://greatist.com/fitness/cardio-bodyweight-exercises. It is always better to find time for exercise and remain active all day. Physical activity aids in endorphin secretion, which not only keeps your body fit, it also makes you feel positive throughout the day!

Recipes for a Healthy Heart

Exercise is just not sufficient if you want a healthy heart. You have to eat the right food. Diet plays a crucial role in developing a healthy heart. To find out which food is heart healthy, have a look at http://www.healthbeckon.com/heart-healthy-foods/. Incorporate these foods in your diet and none of your meals will be boring anymore!

Here are two heart-healthy recipes by Chef Partha Chakrabarti of Marigold Hotel (Hyderabad).

fish-recipe-patato

Grilled Lemon Pepper Indian Salmon sweet potato & Squash Packs

                       Serving Size: 1 Serving

Calories

190 Calories

                    Ingredients

300gm halibut fillets, 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick

2 teaspoons dried basil leaves

1 teaspoon lemon pepper

1 teaspoon seasoned salt

3 medium zucchini or summer squash, cut into 2×1-inch strips

1 medium red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces

1medium size sweet potato cut into wedges.

2 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil

Directions

  • Heat coals or gas grill for direct heat. Cut four 18×12-inch pieces of heavy-duty foil. Cut fish into 4 serving pieces if necessary. Place 1 fish piece on each foil piece. Sprinkle fish with 1 teaspoon of the basil, 1/2 teaspoon of the lemon pepper and 1/2 teaspoon of the seasoned salt.
  • Arrange zucchini and bell pepper over fish. Sprinkle with remaining basil, lemon pepper and seasoned salt. Drizzle with oil. Fold foil over fish and vegetables so edges meet. Seal edges, making tight 1/2-inch fold and fold again. Allow space on sides for circulation and expansion.
  • Cover and grill the foil packets over medium heat for 15 to 20 minutes or until fish flakes with fork and vegetables are tender. Place packets on plates. Cut large X across top of each packet and fold back foil.

* Serve hot as presented in the photograph with mango salsa.

veggie-steak

          Pan Seared cottage cheese & Cous Cous steak with tomato & mango salsa

                       Serving Size: 1 Serving

Calories

170 Calories

                    Ingredients

100gm grated cottage cheese

75gm cooked cous cous

50gm oatmeal

1 teaspoon seasoned salt

3 medium zucchini, broccoli and sweet potato cut into 2×1-inch strips

1 medium red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces

1medium size sweet potato cut into wedges.

5 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil

Orange Juice 150ml

                    Directions

  • Mix well the grated cottage cheese, cooked couscous, chopped onion and all the seasoning and coat the same with dry oatmeal.
  • Heat the flat bottom pan and pan sear the steak till golden brown.
  • Finish the cooking by sprinkling dash of orange juice and place it over tomato salsa.

Serve hot as presented in the photograph with orange salsa.

 

Let me know your feedback after making these two yummy dishes at home. If you thought healthy foods are boring, think again!  There are many heart-healthy recipes for which you don’t have to compromise on taste; you will find these recipes at http://www.health.com/health/recipes/. So you see a healthy heart can be all yours if you follow an active life style, exercise and follow a healthy diet. It is not a herculean task after all!