Avoiding recreational drugs
Smoking has many adverse effects on the heart. It increases the heart rate, constricts major arteries, and can create irregular heartbeats. It raises blood pressure, contributes to the development of plaque, increases the formation of blood clots, and causes blood platelets to cluster and impede blood flow. Quitting can repair heart damage caused by smoking. Even heavy smokers can return to heart health. Several studies have shown that ex-smokers face the same risk of heart disease as non-smokers within five to 10 years after quitting. Drink in moderation. Modest consumption of alcohol may actually protect against coronary artery disease because alcohol appears to raise levels of HDL cholesterol. The American Heart Association defines moderate consumption as one ounce of alcohol per day, roughly one cocktail, one 8-ounce glass of wine, or two 12-ounce glasses of beer. However, even moderate drinking can increase risk factors for heart disease for some people (by raising blood pressure, for example). Excessive drinking always is bad for the heart. It usually raises blood pressure and can poison the heart and cause abnormal heart rhythms or even heart failure. Do not use other recreational drugs. Commonly used recreational drugs, particularly cocaine and "crack," can seriously harm the heart and should never be used.
Seeking treatment for hypertension
High blood pressure, one of the most common and serious risk factors for coronary artery disease, can be controlled completely through lifestyle changes and medication. Moderate hypertension can be controlled by reducing dietary intake of sodium and fat, exercising regularly, managing stress, abstaining from smoking, and drinking alcohol in moderation. People for whom these changes do not work or people with severe hypertension may be helped by many categories of medication. " -This information provided courtesy of Mount Sinai Heart