In the News
Atrial fibrillation is the most common type of heart arrhythmia which causes the heart to fibrillate, or contract quickly and without a regular heartbeat. The heart muscle doesn’t work together properly increasing the risk of stroke and heart failure. In some cases, people with atrial fibrillation will not experience any symptoms.
One of the primary risk factors for atrial fibrillation is a high body mass index, or obesity. However, while it is a risk factor, those who are obese can reduce their risk by increasing their physical activity levels.
In August 2015 research published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology shared that individuals who were obese have a lower chance of recurring issues with heart arrhythmias if they had higher levels of cardiovascular fitness. Interestingly, the risk of arrhythmia also declined further as the individual’s capacity for exercise increased.
Daily Health Tip
Although many see cardiovascular exercise as a means to losing weight, there are other less visible benefits to aerobic exercises. Cardiovascular fitness is not necessarily evident by an individual’s weight. Individuals who are well within then normal body mass index ratings, but who are not physically active, have cardiovascular risk factors for heart disease and stroke and those who are overweight but are also physically active carry less risk than those who are overweight and sedentary.
No matter how much weight you carry, or wish you didn’t carry, it’s important that you are as physically active as you can be. Discuss your activity plans with your physician to ensure that you are capable of achieving your goals and that no other underlying medical problem should be addressed first.
Making a change to your physical activity level can be challenging. Especially when your level of activity has been limited to typing on a computer and running the remote control on the television.
Make changes slowly and integrate them fully into your daily activity. Habits are best formed when they are attached to other things you normally do during the day. Try taking a 15 minute walk after each meal, or get on a stationary bike in your home after each meal if the weather isn’t cooperating.
Don’t start an intense program because you’ll lose motivation and interest when you can’t get up out of your chair the next day because of muscle soreness. Begin slowly, make the change permanent and move on to the next addition. Before six months have passed you’ll notice a big change in your ability to move through your day without getting tired and with greater confidence.
Have a wonderful day!
Your Healthy Life America Team