Lifestyle and home remedies
Your doctor may suggest that, in addition to other treatments, you make lifestyle changes that will keep your heart as healthy as possible.
These lifestyle changes may include:
- Eat heart-healthy foods. Eat a healthy diet that's low in salt and solid fats and rich in fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
- Exercise regularly. Exercise daily and increase your physical activity.
- Quit smoking. If you smoke and can't quit on your own, talk to your doctor about strategies or programs to help you break a smoking habit.
- Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight increases your risk of developing heart disease.
- Keep blood pressure and cholesterol levels under control. Make lifestyle changes and take medications as prescribed to correct high blood pressure (hypertension) or high cholesterol.
- Drink alcohol in moderation. If you choose to drink alcohol, do so in moderation. For healthy adults, that means up to one drink a day for women of all ages and men older than age 65, and up to two drinks a day for men age 65 and younger.
- Maintain follow-up care. Take your medications as prescribed and have regular follow-up appointments with your doctor. Tell your doctor if your symptoms worsen.
To prevent heart arrhythmia, it's important to live a heart-healthy lifestyle to reduce your risk of heart disease. A heart-healthy lifestyle may include:
- Eating a heart-healthy diet
- Increasing your physical activity
- Avoiding smoking
- Keeping a healthy weight
- Limiting or avoiding caffeine and alcohol
- Reducing stress, as intense stress and anger can cause heart rhythm problems
- Using over-the-counter medications with caution, as some cold and cough medications contain stimulants that may trigger a rapid heartbeat
Feb. 23, 2016
- Marx JA, et al., eds. Dysrhythmias. In: Rosen's Emergency Medicine: Concepts and Clinical Practice. 8th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2014. http://www.clinicalkey.com.
- What is an arrhythmia? National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/arr. Accessed Oct. 21, 2015.
- About arrhythmia. American Heart Association. http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/Arrhythmia/AboutArrhythmia/About-Arrhythmia_UCM_002010_Article.jsp. Accessed Oct. 25, 2015.
- Neumar RW, et al. Part 1: Executive summary 2015 American Heart Association guidelines update for cardiopulmonary resuscitation and emergency cardiovascular care. Circulation. 2015;132(suppl):S315.
- Overview of arrhythmias. Merck Manual Professional Version. http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/cardiovascular-disorders/arrhythmias-and-conduction-disorders/overview-of-arrhythmias?qt=arrhythmias&alt=sh. Accessed Oct. 25, 2015.
- Zipes DP, et al. Assessment of the patient with a cardiac arrhythmia. In: Cardiac Electrophysiology: From Cell to Bedside. 6th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2014. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Oct. 25, 2015.
- Bonow RO, et al. Specific arrhythmias: Diagnosis and treatment. In: Braunwald's Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine. 10th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2015.
- Pederson CT, et al. EHRA/HRS/APHRS expert consensus on ventricular arrhythmias. Heart Rhythm. 2014;11:e166.
- Heart diseases and disorders. Heart Rhythm Society. http://www.hrsonline.org/Patient-Resources/Heart-Diseases-Disorders#a. Oct. 28, 2015.
- Levy S, et al. Arrhythmia management for the primary care clinician. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Oct. 25, 2015.
- Riggin ER. Allscripts EPSi. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Oct. 5, 2015.
- Brenyo A, et al. Review of complementary and alternative medicine medical treatment of arrhythmias. The American Journal of Cardiology. 2014;113:897.
- Alcohol and heart health. American Heart Association. http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/GettingHealthy/NutritionCenter/HealthyEating/Alcohol-and-Heart-Health_UCM_305173_Article.jsp#.VjEP0rerTIU. Accessed Oct. 28, 2015.
- Mankad R (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Nov. 16, 2015.