Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) is a serious condition affecting approximately 12 to 20 percent of Americans over 60. This condition occurs when plaque buildup in the arteries reduces blood flow to the arms, kidneys, stomach, and—most frequently—the legs. Luckily an Evergreen Park nurse practitioner and vascular specialists can help you reduce your risk of PAD and maintain a healthy circulatory system. Here are tips to prevent Peripheral Artery Disease;
Keep your blood pressure in check
High blood pressure can significantly predispose you to PAD. The force of your blood pushing against the artery wall may create damage that emerges as plaque over time. When plaque accumulates in your arteries, it causes them to constrict and restrict blood flow. Keeping your blood pressure in check could stop this from happening. You can achieve this through good eating habits, regular exercise, and reducing your stress.
Cigarette smokers are at increased risk for PAD. Tobacco smoke contains irritants and carcinogens that damage blood vessel walls and restrict blood flow. Moreover, smoking is associated with the formation of blood clots, which further restrict blood flow. Giving up cigarettes is one of the best decisions you can make for your health.
Get some regular exercise
Maintaining a regular exercise routine is crucial for avoiding PAD and keeping blood flowing smoothly. Your blood vessels have to put up more effort to give the increased oxygen and nutrients your muscles need during activity. As a result, the increased blood flow aids in the prevention of plaque development in the arteries. Maintain a modest exercise routine seven days a week, aiming for at least 30 minutes on most days.
Embrace a heart-healthy diet
The foods you consume have a significant impact on your artery health. Include heart-healthy items in your regular diet to reduce the risk of PAD. Eat more fruits and vegetables and less processed foods by focusing on lean meats like fish, chicken, and lentils. Add some oats, brown rice, and whole-wheat bread to your meal. Consume more unsaturated fats from food sources like nuts, seeds, and avocado and less saturated and trans fats.
Controlling blood sugar levels is crucial for avoiding PAD in people with diabetes. High blood sugar causes damage to the blood arteries making it easier for plaque to build up. In addition, individuals with diabetes are at high risk of High blood pressure, high cholesterol, and other risk factors for PAD. Consistent blood sugar testing, careful medication control, and healthy lifestyle choices like exercise and a balanced diet are all essential components of a comprehensive diabetes treatment strategy.
Practice good foot care
Reduced blood flow causes poor healing of wounds and infections, making foot issues typical in people with PAD. Take care of your feet and lower limbs to keep moving freely and pain-free. Always check your feet for wounds, sores, and infections regularly. Keep your feet clean and moisturized to minimize fungal infections, but avoid getting lotion between your toes.
Call Vascular Specialists to book your appointment for treatment of PAD.