Cardiomyopathy is a term used to describe diseases of the heart muscle. The heart muscle can become enlarged, thick or rigid, and there are various ways to manage the condition. Reducing your risk for heart disease through lifestyle changes and monitoring your heart for things like irregular heartbeats can reduce your risk for further problems.
If you’ve been diagnosed with cardiomyopathy, here are some tips for managing your health.
1. Nutrition and Exercise
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle can reduce the symptoms of cardiomyopathy. A healthy diet is important to your overall health. Avoid foods that are high in saturated fat, salt and sugar. Lean meats, fruits and vegetables are good staples of a heart-healthy diet.
Regular exercise is an important part of staying healthy. However, it’s vital that you discuss your exercise with your doctor before making any big changes like increasing physical activity.
2. Maintain a Healthy Weight
Understanding your daily calorie needs is a good way to maintain a healthy weight. Reducing the amount of calories you eat and increasing the amount you burn through activity can have many benefits for your heart and your overall health.
3. Quit Smoking
If you are a smoker and you have cardiomyopathy, it’s time to consider quitting. Smoking damages the heart and lungs and puts additional stress on your arteries. Discuss your decision to quit smoking with your doctor, who can offer support or may direct you to smoking cessation resources.
4. Reduce Stress
Stress can put strain on the heart, and stress reduction can improve heart health. Exercising regularly, eating a healthy diet, laughing and spending time with people you enjoy are some ways that you can reduce stress and improve your overall wellbeing. Less stress can help to protect your heart and reduce symptoms of cardiomyopathy.