Now this is super important because heart disease is the leading cause of death in american taking 599,413 lives each year. No one is exempt, and its never too early to start protecting your heart.
It is better to prevent heart disease then deal with healing its effects. I work in a hospital and I see so many people who suffer from heart disease, prevention is key!
Remember, you don't need to be perfect, or follow all these guidelines, do what you can! Any change toward these guidelines help
Lifestyle changes to prevent heart disease
- If you smoke, stop smoking
- Physical Activity - 150 minutes a week of moderate exercise, 75 minutes a week of vigorous exercise, or an equal combination of both. Do aerobic activity at episodes of 10 minutes or more and engage in muscle strengthening activities at least 2 days a week.
- Weight management / reduction -
- With diet and exercise
- Aim towards a BMI of less than 25
- Waist less than 35 inches
- 30-60 minutes of moderate intensity exercise such as brisk walking on most days of the week.
- Omega 3 fatty acids -
- Fish oil supplements of 1.8 grams per day
- Helps lower triglycerides and high cholesterol
- Blood Pressure -
- Aim for <120/80 by lifestyle approaches such as weight control, increased physical activity, alcohol moderation, sodium restriction, and increased fruit and veggie consumption
- Cholesterol Panel - Ask your doctor for a copy of your latest blood work and compare:
- LDL <100
- HDL >50
- Triglycerides <150
- HbA1C <7% in diabetic people
Specific Dietart recommendations to prevent heart disease in woman
Based on a 2,000 calorie diet, may be less if you are consuming a lower amount of calories. Use this as a guide.
This diet will move your cholesterol panel to the above recommendations.
- Fruits & Vegetables: 4.5 cups per day of all fruits and vegetables raw or cooked.
- Fish: 2 servings per week
- serving: 3.5 oz, or the size of your palm
- Fiber: 30 grams per day
- found in: bran cereal, whole grains, oatmeal, berries, fruit, vegetables, beans
- Whole Grains: 3 servings per day
- serving: 1 slice of whole wheat bread, 1/2 cup of cooked rice or pasta, 1 oz dry cereal
- Sugar: less than 5 servings per week
- less than 450 calories from sugary drinks like soda and juice
- serving: 1 tablespoon of sugar, honey, jelly, or jam
- Nuts/Legumes/Seeds: 4 or more servings per day
- Saturated Fat: Less than 7% of total energy
- Found in: fried foods, fat on skin of meats and chicken, desserts, butter, cheese, sour cream, cookies, donuts
- Cholesterol: less than 150 mg per day
- found in animal meat, eggs, organ meats, animal products such as cheese
- Alcohol: 1 or less drinks per day
- Sodium: Less than 1500 mg a day
- Trans Fat: 0
Try to choose 3 things to do this week, and follow them.
Any change you make will help protect your heart!