Heart disease in older adults comes in many forms. From a devastating heart attack to experiencing heart failure, these conditions can feel worrisome. However, for many people, there are ways to manage these conditions to minimize their progression or perhaps even improve them. The key is to have access to the type and level of help you need. 

Doctor’s Orders for Managing Heart Disease in Older Adults

There are many types of heart disease and heart-related ailments common in older adults. Each one of these conditions can create limitations for a person, often leading to the need to make diet and physical fitness changes. The first and primary step is to know what your doctor recommends. Depending on the severity of your condition, you may benefit from medications, diet changes, cardio rehab, and many other tools. It is a combination of these that may help improve your quality and length of life.

Supporting Heart Health at Home

What can you do to help support heart health? As noted, follow your doctor’s recommendations. Consider a few strategies that help most people with heart disease:

  • Change your diet. Focus on a nutrient-rich diet that includes fruits and vegetables and has less saturated fat.
  • Get active, which may just mean going for a walk each day. If you are healthy enough to do so, consider programs that allow you to build up your cardio function. Cardio workouts should be done with the help of a therapist.
  • Restrict the amount of sodium you take in daily. Look for it everywhere, including frozen foods, prepared foods, and meals from restaurants.
  • Increase the amount of fresh fish and omega-3 fatty acids you consume. Find them in nuts, too. These can help support heart function.
  • Watch your water intake. Increase water but reduce the number of sugary drinks. You may want to talk to your doctor to determine if you have a fluid restriction, which is common in those who have heart failure.
  • Get rid of the sugar. Managing diabetes and high blood sugar can help support heart health as well.

It’s a combination of these things that can help you to live a healthy life. You may be able to work with your doctor to create a plan for addressing your condition with medications. If necessary, be sure to follow the rules your doctor sets for the best possible outcome.