Lifestyle Advice

  • There is a lot of information available for people with Congenital Heart disease who want to be healthier and require some extra help. Many are online and here are a few resources you may find helpful.
    These Apps can be downloaded onto your mobile phone free of charge and may assist you to get started!

    Healthy Living and Weight Management

  • Change4Life Be Food Smart app

    The Be Food Smart app will help you see how much sugar, saturated fat and salt is really inside your food and drink

  • Couch to 5K app

    Couch to 5k has been designed to get you off the sofa and running in just 9 weeks. Grab your trainers and follow the step-by-step instructions in this free app.

  • Active 10 app

    A brisk 10 minute walk every day can make a difference to your health. Download the free Active 10 app to measure what you’re doing – and how you can do more.

  • Easy Meals app

    Eat healthier versions of foods you love. You’ll find hundreds of delicious, easy meal ideas in this free app.


    Contains lots of information about being healthier:

    Their weight loss plan features
    • promotes safe and sustainable weight loss
    • learn to make healthier food choices
    • get support from our online community
    • a weekly progress chart
    • exercise plans to help you lose weight
    learn skills to prevent weight regain

  • Useful Contacts

    Adult Congenital Nurse Specialist Tel: 0113 39 28154;
    Sarah, Specialist Physiotherapist Tel. 0113 39 20609
    E-mail: ,

  • Travel Information

    The majority of people with congenital heart disease can and do fly/travel long distances around the world. If you are unsure ask at your outpatient appointment or contact the Adult Congenital Nurse Specialist. The most important point to remember is to ensure that you declare your heart condition when booking travel insurance. Any omissions or mistakes made in relation to your medical condition can be used as grounds to refuse your claim if made.

    If necessary a medical letter can be provided, but the majority of companies do not require this. We can provide you with a list of insurance companies and The Somerville Foundation is also a useful source of information Tel: 0800 854 759, website

  • Career Advice

    It is important that you know where to get the right career advice as you may need to be realistic about your career options. Those with rigorous fitness tests such as the armed forces or police may not be an option. However that is not to say that there is not the right job out there for you. Connexions direct are a really useful source of information offering advice on education choices and careers. They can be contacted on 0808 001 3219 or

    You may feel that your heart condition may make it difficult for you to find a job. The website is a useful resource with information about disability employment advisers who can help you to find a job to suit you or help in practical ways to enable you to work.

  • Insurance

    It can be difficult for some people who have congenital heart disease to get insurance. This is often because companies do not have the medical knowledge relating to specific congenital heart conditions or there is a lack of long-term survival data available. This can cause problems when tying to buy a house or get life insurance.

    The best advice is to shop around as there can be marked differences between companies. It is important that you inform the insurance company of your medical condition to ensure that you are fully covered. There are some more sympathetic insurers who can be identified and contacted through the Somerville Foundation Tel: 0800 854759, Somerville Foundation

  • Contraception and Pregnancy

    Contraception and pregnancy may have implications for people with congenital heart disease. It is especially important for girls with congenital heart disease to avoid unplanned pregnancies. It is also important that you know what types of contraception are okay for you to use as not all of them are suitable for people with congenital heart disease.

    Even though this is something you might not have thought of yet, contraception and possible future pregnancies will be discussed with you in the Adult Congenital Heart clinic. This is to give you as much information as possible so that you can make choices about your future when you are ready. If you would like some more information about contraception you can contact your GP or:

    The Adult Congenital Nurse Specialists, Tel 0113 392 8154