How to Reduce Heart Disease in Children
Developing heart disease in adulthood can stem from childhood habits. Creating a healthy lifestyle for your children will help decrease their chances of acquiring heart disease.
“The process of heart disease can begin as young as ten years of age,” says pediatric cardiologist Dr. Robin Fountain. “If untreated, children will go on to develop heart disease in their 40s-60s. The good news is these early changes can be reversed with weight control, exercise, eating a heart healthy diet and never smoking.”
Bronson Heart & Vascular provides a variety of ways to help reduce the risk of heart disease in your child.
Starting at birth, good nutrition can decrease the risk of heart disease. Encourage your child to eat more vegetables and fruits, and reduce sugary beverages and foods. Portion control is also very important.
- Physical Activity
Physical activity in childhood sets the tone for exercise habits in adulthood. Children under 17 should exercise at least 60 minutes a day. Help motivate your child to exercise by participating in physical activities with them. This creates a more enjoyable experience.
- Smoking/Tobacco Exposure
Provide a smoke-free environment in your home and vehicles. This helps prevent your child from being exposed to the harmful effects of secondhand smoke. You should also discourage your child from smoking or using tobacco.
Sources: circ.ahajournals.org, uptodate.com, hillcresthenryeta.com, cdc.gov
Bronson Heart & Vascular pediatric cardiologists are dedicated to caring for the heart health of children throughout the region. The team serves infants, children and adolescents at outpatient clinics and at Bronson Children’s Hospital the only children’s hospital in southwest and south central Michigan. For more information on the services provided, visit bronsonhealth.com/pediatric-cardiology.
The Bronson Heart & Vascular team is committed to heart and vascular disease prevention, and sharing easy steps you can take to live a healthier life. Looking for a Bronson doctor to help you? For a complete list of providers at Bronson, visit bronsonhealth.com/find-a-doctor or call Bronson HealthAnswers at (269) 341-7723.