Are Your Over 55? How Being More Active and Incorporating the “Eat the Rainbow” Philosophy into Your Diet will Help Reduce the Risk of Heart Disease and Help You Become a Healthier Version of Yourself
Coronary heart disease (CHD) is a significant cause of death in the UK and worldwide. Statistics show that around 7.6 million people living with heart disease in the UK: 4 million men and 3.6 million women. Getting older increases your risk of heart disease, with over 65s significantly more at risk of suffering from a heart attack stroke or develop CHD in comparison with younger people. Very often, the risk factors that play in causing heart and circulatory conditions are spoken about. There are some risk factors you can control, and some you can’t. However, being more active and eating healthily can reduce the risk of heart disease.
Be More Active and Workout!
Firstly, being more active and working out will reduce your risk of heart disease. It has been proven that regular exercise enables your heart and blood circulatory system to become more efficient, lowering your cholesterol level and maintain a healthy blood pressure level. The NHS recommend that you aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate activity every week; equating to 30 minutes a day for at least 5 days a week. However, if you’ve been inactive for a while, we recommend that you ease your way back into it, and gradually build up your activity to reach recommended levels. After all slow progress is still progress!
Here are Some Workouts That You Can Try
1. Weight Training Workouts
It has been proven that through the proper use of weight training equipment, e.g. dumbbells and barbells can help you strengthen your heart and improve circulation. Weight training increases lean muscle mass, and gives your cardiovascular system places to send the blood being pumped. Resulting in less pressure on your arteries, which helps to reduce the chances of heart-related problems.
Click here to check out top 10 dumbbell weight lifting exercising that you can do from the comfort of your own home or in the gym. If you don’t have a pair of dumbbells, don’t worry we’ve got your back! Click here to visit our shop section and purchase.
2. High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
HIIT is also great way to improve and develop aerobic fitness. These are often short exercise routines often lasting between 15-20 minutes but have numerous health benefits. As they are quick and convenient they are perfect for over 55s that may not have time to visit the gym for hours a day. Why not try the video below? This is from TC60 – an award winning class and trainer Luke Wilson, as seen in Mens Health 2019. It is a great beginner HIIT workout that anyone can do at home.
There are many other workouts you can do to raise your activity levels, click on the following links for more ideas.
- Click here for a guide to yoga
- Click here for step aerobics and how to do it from home
- Click here for a 20 HIIT rowing workout
Incorporating the “Eat the Rainbow” Philosophy into Your Diet
Another way you can become a healthier you and reduce your risk of CHD is through incorporating the “eat the rainbow” philosophy through eating a variety of nutrient-rich, plant-based foods. Through the visualisation of the rainbow as you eat throughout the week, this will help you to incorporate a range of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants into your diet. The colours that we see in our fruits, vegetables, and other foods, actually represent phytonutrients – essentially the nutrients that help prevent disease and keep your body working properly. How each colours of the different foods we consume can reduce the risk of developing heart disease as well as the numerous health benefits will be mentioned below.
Red Food Benefits
- They help fight heart disease.
- Lycopene helps move fat away from the intestines and blood vessel, keeping it away from the heart.
- Contain electrolytes that help to regulate blood pressure.
- Help to reduce the body’s production of cancer cells.
2. Orange Food Benefits
- They protect your eyes – as the body converts carotenoids to vitamin A, which has significant effects on your eyes.
- Great source of vitamin C – boosts your immune system and helps fight off infections.
- Contain carotenoids which have been shown to reduce the risk of cancer.
3. Green Food Benefits
- Helps to lower your cancer risk – Folate helps your DNA replicate and repair itself. High folate intake is associated with a 30–40% reduction in colon polyps and a reduction in heart disease.
- Helps to regulate digestion – insoluble fiber in green foods helps to prevent constipation.
4. Purple Food Benefits
- Help your heart
- Anthocyanins help to keep blood flowing smoothly, controlling blood pressure.
- Quercetin helps to manage blood cholesterol levels, enabling blood vessels to stay healthy.
- Help your brain
- Anthocyanins might help your brain cells work together more efficiently.
- Protect against diabetes
- Anthocyanins help to control insulin levels in the blood.
5. White Food Benefits
- Protect your heart and blood vessels
- Foods containing potassium (potatoes) helps your nerves and muscles work — both of which are crucial to proper heart function.
- Lowers blood pressure and cholesterol
- Allicin in foods like onion and garlic help making it easier for your heart to work.
- Can help to fight cancer
- Folate in foods like chickpeas, cauliflower and turnips can helps your body avoid the cell mutations that can lead to cancer.
- Numerous white vegetables contain vitamin C, a crucial vitamin that helps your body fight off infections before you get sick.
So now you’ve heard all of the benefits, will you be adding colourful fruit and veg to your weekly shop?
We recommend that you consult your physician, doctor or other professional before beginning any exercise or nutrition program. This is crucial for individuals over the age of 35 or persons with pre-existing health problems. We at exercise.co.uk assume no responsibility for personal injury or property damage sustained using our advice.