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Leisure activities for healthier heart and mind: Expert suggests integrating hobbies to boost cardiovascular wellness

ByZarafshan Shiraz, New Delhi
Mar 05, 2024 08:43 PM IST

Beyond exercise, explore the heart-healthy benefits of hobbies from chess to cycling and embrace leisure activities to boost cardiovascular wellness

Maintaining excellent cardiovascular health is not merely a physiological imperative but a holistic pursuit encompassing physical, spiritual and mental health realms. The heart, always described with love, literally and figuratively, is an intricate organ that is the undeniable epicenter of our well-being.

Leisure activities for healthier heart and mind: Expert suggests integrating hobbies to boost cardiovascular wellness (Photo by Real Simple)

In today’s world, regarding longevity and the pursuit of good health, we look beyond conservative conventional methods and explore the profound impact of leisure activities on the heart. In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Dr Haresh G Mehta, Director-Interventional Cardiology and Dr Kayan Siodia, Consultant Interventional Cardiologist at SL Raheja Hospital in Mahim, asserted that hobbies are beneficial for heart health and said, “Engaging in positive dimensions or hobbies for heart health is not a mere indulgence but an investment that bears fruits in the long run. Beyond any reasonable doubt, data underscores the symbiotic relationship between leisure activity and heart health. A sedentary heart is a significant factor for future heart diseases, and incorporating physical activities that foster physical well-being becomes paramount in cardiovascular wellness.”

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The experts revealed, “There are a varied number of physical activities which can be enjoyed for better health. These activities, which intertwine in some circumstances with people’s enjoyment and hobbies, include cycling, swimming, jogging and running, among others. Beyond helping to control blood pressure and cholesterol, these activities also boost vitality and contribute to a well-rounded lifestyle. More importantly, they also act as a veritable elixir for the heart.”

Role of leisure activities in cardiovascular health:

Dr Haresh G and Dr Kayan Siodia opined, 'Apart from physical activities and exercise, the world of mind-engaging hobbies, which also play a pivotal role in heart health, is often overlooked. Engaging in cognitive activity induces a state of mental well-being, which is extremely important in today’s day and age. Chess, puzzles, or strategic games are forms of exercise given to children and it is highly recommended that they be continued into adolescence and adulthood as these activities provide a range of benefits for mental agility and growth."

They added, “The therapeutic benefits of such activities must always be emphasized and not overlooked by individuals of any age group. The harmful effects of stress have been spoken about extensively and it is shown that simple activities like painting, writing, or playing an instrument can be highly beneficial, both in the long and short term.”

In conclusion, the pursuit of cardiovascular wellness extends beyond the realm of traditional health paradigms. Hobbies and activities, as stated above, present a compelling avenue to fortify the citadel of heart health or in other words, the fusion of physical activity, mental engagement and creative expression can cultivate a resilient heart that beats with vitality and vigour. What hobby are you picking up today?

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