Heart Health: 4 Tips for Age 40

Simon Jung MD, a physician with the TriHealth Heart Institute, provides four tips for keeping your heart healthy at age 40.

“I see a lot of people in their young ages in my office. For a variety of reasons, they don’t feel good," Dr. Jung says. "I see and learn that many of us can do a lot of things at age 40 that can help prevent heart attacks and such.”

Tip #1: Exercise Regularly

Dr. Jung says scheduling regular exercise is one of the best ways to prevent health issues down the road.

“We’re running to and from places, but we neglect to exercise, which is a tremendous – and the most significant – thing you can do for your health,” he points out. “It does a variety of things ... like lowering your blood pressure and your cholesterol, and the benefit is just immeasurable.”

Learn more exercise tips in the TriHealth.com Health Library:

Tip #2: Check Cholesterol Levels

Keeping tabs on your cholesterol levels is another way to prevent heart issues and reduce your risk for heart attack.

However, it’s important to remember that high cholesterol levels may not cause outward symptoms. “It’s really not an issue of weight or even, perhaps, diet. We could be just genetically high and we could have very elevated cholesterol levels and not know it,” Dr. Jung explains.

If you chronically have high cholesterol levels, he suggests checking with your doctor for drug therapies that may help.

Tip #3: Get a Blood Pressure Machine

Dr. Jung says that many people are often unaware or in denial that they have high blood pressure. “But, I see it all the time, and statistically, by the time you hit 40, the odds are high ... particularly if you gain some weight.”

Tip #4: Eat a Heart Healthy Diet

Dr. Jung recommends avoiding processed foods, including processed carbohydrates, as a general rule of thumb. He also suggests eating a diet high in fruits, vegetables and protein. 

"Those patients of mine who figure this out at age 40 or so, they're in their 80s and looking healthier," he explains. "Actually, they are my healthiest patients, [those] who follow these basic rules of health."


Tags Heart