Often, one of the most effective ways to lower the risk for coronary artery disease and other cardiovascular diseases is to make changes to lifestyle, especially in diet and physical activity.
There are four lifestyle factors that are particularly dangerous in terms of coronary artery disease and the overall health of the heart. They are an unhealthy diet, an inactive lifestyle, poorly managed stress, and tobacco use.
Although a healthy diet and regular fitness program are important for everyone, they're vital for people who are overweight or obese. Providers can help patients develop a weight loss program that works for their specific needs and condition. Both diet and physical activity are critical in accomplishing any weight loss goal.
Some of the ways people cope with stress, such as excessively drinking alcohol, abusing other substances, smoking, or overeating, are not healthy ways to manage stress. Learning how to manage stress and cope with problems can improve emotional and physical health.