February 10, 2022

NCGA Fitness: February is Heart Health Month

We love golf, there is no doubt about that, but did you know that even when we have a less than stellar round, golf can still love us back?

According to the American Heart Association, nearly half of U.S. adults have hypertension, or high blood pressure, and only about 1 in 4 of those individuals has their hypertension under control. Hypertension is a major preventable risk factor for heart disease and stroke, which are the first and fifth leading causes of death in the United States, respectively. Often considered to be a condition for the older generation, heart disease and other associated illnesses are on the rise across all age groups.

What can you do and how can your golf game help?

Playing golf can help you avoid hypertension in the first place. Physical activity can help keep you at a healthy weight and lower your blood pressure. The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans recommends that adults get at least 2 hours and 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise, such as brisk walking or bicycling, every week. That’s about 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week.  So, each time you play golf you are contributing to better heart health. Walking the course for an 18 or even a 9 hole round certainly ticks the exercise box. Even if your golf game includes a golf cart, you can still get your 30 mins of exercise in, by sticking to the cart path during your round and walking to your Ball.

Packing healthy snack options for your round will also help you avoid high blood pressure and its complications. Pack plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. Cut down on sodium. Too much sodium (salt) can raise your risk for high blood pressure, heart disease, and stroke. Processed foods have a lot of sodium. So please avoid that Hot Dog and the bag of chips at the Turn. Choose healthier snacks and choose water over those sugary drinks.

Research shows that taking a little time each day to promote a healthy lifestyle can help improve your long-term heart health. We think this is a prescription for more golf!

Learn more about your Heart Health and the warning signs of Heart Attack, Stroke or Cardiac Arrest with the American Heart Association.