You can help prevent coronary artery disease by taking steps toward a heart-healthy lifestyle. A heart-healthy lifestyle can also help you reduce risk factors such as high cholesterol and high blood pressure.
Use lifestyle changes
- Quit smokingQuit smoking. Avoid secondhand smoke too. Quitting smoking may be the best thing you can do to prevent heart disease.
- Exercise . There are lots of ways that exercise boosts your heart health. It can improve cholesterol and blood pressure. It can also help you reach a healthy weight. Talk to your doctor before starting an exercise program to make sure that it's safe for you.
- Eat a heart-healthy diet . The way you eat can help you control your cholesterol and blood pressure.
- Stay at a healthy weight . Being active and eating healthy foods can help you stay at a healthy weight or lose weight if you need to.
Manage other health problems
Manage other health problems that raise your risk for a heart attack. These include diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. A heart-healthy lifestyle can help you manage these problems. But you may also need to take medicine.
Stress can hurt your heart. Keep stress low by talking about your problems and feelings, rather than keeping your feelings hidden. Try different ways to reduce stress, such as exercise, deep breathing, meditation, or yoga.
Deciding whether to take aspirin
Talk to your doctor before you start taking aspirin every day. Aspirin can help certain people lower their risk of a heart attack or stroke. But taking aspirin isn't right for everyone, because it can cause serious bleeding.
You and your doctor can decide if aspirin is a good choice for you based on your risk of a heart attack and stroke and your risk of serious bleeding. If you have a low risk of a heart attack and stroke, the benefits of aspirin probably won't outweigh the risk of bleeding.