Laughter, hugs improve your heart health

Simple ways to lower blood pressure and improve heart health

ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) - It is the leading cause of death for both men and women and nearly half of Americans have at least one of the three key factors for heart disease: high cholesterol, high blood pressure, or smoking.

Go ahead and laugh! A daily of dose humor can improve your heart health. Laughing dilates blood vessels, increasing blood flow and lowering blood pressure. Another thing that can help: snuggling. Snuggling with a loved one releases a stress-releasing hormone called oxytocin, which can reduce your high blood pressure. And it’s not just people hugs that count! According to a University of Maryland study, heart attack patients who had a dog were eight time more likely to be alive a year later. Also, a study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology found that not getting the right amount of sleep can affect your heart health.

Kathleen Armstrong, Director of Pediatric Psychology at University of South Florida, told Ivanhoe “There are guidelines to follow and you have to look at both quantity and quality of sleep.”

Don’t over sleep! That increases your risk of heart disease and sleeping less than six hours raises your risk by 27 percent. Even those who wake up throughout the night or have trouble falling asleep are 34 percent more likely to develop heart disease. Simple steps to a healthy heart.

And coffee lovers rejoice! For people with an abnormal heart rate, drinking coffee may stabilize your heart rhythm. You also may want to have that cup of coffee standing up. A study done by University of California, San Diego found standing and moving for one hour instead of sitting can reduce a woman’s cardiovascular disease risk by 25 percent.

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Copyright 2019 WMC. All rights reserved. Contributor(s) to this news report include: Milvionne Chery, Writer and Robert Walko, Editor.