By Rick Pietzak
football fans will struggle to choose sides today between the San Francisco 49ers,
who could tie the Steelers for most Super Bowl victories, or a hated division
rival, the Baltimore Ravens. The stress
of making that decision is more than enough to get a fan worked up, perhaps
more than the actual game.
- Stay calm. There’s no use
getting worked up over something you can’t control so try to relax and enjoy
the game. Stress releases adrenaline into the bloodstream, which causes your
heart rate and blood pressure to rise.
- Eat healthful foods and
stay away from salty snacks. Limit your sodium intake to 1,500 to 2,300
milligrams a day, as recommended by the American Heart Association. Make sure
you eat lots of fruits and vegetables, fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids that
prevent coronary artery disease, and limit alcohol intake to two drinks a day
for men and less than one drink a day for women. A drink is defined as 12
ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine or 1.5 ounces of whiskey.
- Visit your doctor for
regular check-ups. If you have risk factors for heart disease, schedule a
preventive screening with your doctor. Risk factors can include high blood
pressure, high cholesterol, tobacco use, diabetes, a family history of heart
disease, physical inactivity and obesity.
- Discontinue unhealthy tobacco habits for
yourself, your family and friends. Exposure to second-hand smoke increases the
risk for vascular disease.
- Not feeling well? If you
develop discomfort in the chest, neck, jaw, back, shoulder or arm, along with
difficulty breathing, call 911. These are symptoms of a heart attack.