HEART HEALTHY MONTH

February is Heart Healthy Month.  And because heart disease is the #1 killer for men and women, it is important that each of us learn how to prevent heart disease and learn how to improve our cardiovascular health.   FM100.3’s Heart Healthy Month will be sharing tips on how to recognize the dangers of heart disease, when to call a healthcare professional, and how to get back on track to better heart health.

 

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States. Physical activity can help reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, but only about 22 percent of adults meet the federal Physical Activity Guidelines. NHLBI encourages Americans to spend at least 2 1/2 hours per week of physical activity that gets your heart beating faster and leaves you a little breathless. There are flexible ways to break it into amounts of daily activity, and even small amounts add up and can have lasting heart health benefits. More information about living heart healthy at www.nhlbi.nih.gov/heartmonth.

 

Your Heart and COVID-19 – CLICK HERE

 

 



With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, many view February as the month of love, but it is also American Heart Month. Heart disease is the leading killer of Americans, taking the lives of 2,200 people each day. In addition, 103 million adults have high blood pressure and 6.5 million are living with heart failure. While genetic factors do play a part in cardiovascular disease, the good news is 80 percent of cardiovascular diseases may be preventable with education and action. Simple lifestyle changes can make a big impact when it comes to heart health. Show your heart some love with these 20 tips.


20 TIPS TO KEEP YOUR HEART HEALTHY

1. EXERCISE

Keep it simple. Try walking for 30 minutes a day. Any activity that gets you up and moving is good for your heart.

2. EAT HEALTHY

Eat a wide range of foods to ensure you’re getting a good balanced diet and all the right vitamins and minerals.

3. DON’T SMOKE

Smoking increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases, which includes coronary heart disease and stroke.

4. GET ENOUGH SLEEP

A good night’s sleep is just as important as regular exercise and a healthy diet. Poor sleep has immediate negative effects on your body. Stay at a healthy weight.

5. GET YOUR TEETH CHECKED

Research shows that gun disease is a marker for heart disease, so practice good dental hygiene.

6. MANAGE STRESS

Exercise, Relax Your Muscles ( When you’re stressed, your muscles get tense), Deep Breathing exercises, Eat Well, Slow Down, Take a Break, Make Time for Hobbies, Talk About Your Problems

7. CONTROL YOUR CHOLESTEROL AND BLOOD PRESSURE

Reduce saturated fats. Saturated fats, found primarily in red meat and full-fat dairy products, raise your total cholesterol, Eliminate trans fats, Eat foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, Increase soluble fiber, Add whey protein.

8. BE SMART ABOUT FATS

Eat more healthy fats. Eating foods rich in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fat can improve blood cholesterol levels and lower your risk of heart disease. Eat omega 3 fatty acids every day, from fatty fish such as salmon, trout, or herring, or from flaxseed, kale, spinach, or walnuts. Other sources of healthy fats include olive oil, avocados, nuts, and nut butters.

9. DON’T REPLACE FAT WITH SUGAR OR REFINED CARBS

When cutting back on heart-risky foods, such unhealthy fats, it’s important to replace them with healthy alternatives. Replacing processed meats with fish or chicken, for example, can make a positive difference to your health. But switching animal fats for refined carbohydrates, though—such as replacing your breakfast bacon with a donut or sugary cereal—won’t do anything to lower your risk for cardiovascular disease.

10. FOCUS ON HIGHER FIBER FOOD

A diet high in fiber can lower “bad” cholesterol and provide nutrients that help protect against heart disease. As an added bonus, it may also help you to lose weight. Since fiber stays in the stomach longer than other foods, the feeling of fullness will stay with you much longer, helping you to eat less. Fiber also moves fat through your digestive system quicker so less of it is absorbed. And when you fill up on fiber, you’ll also have more energy for exercising.

11. STEER CLEAR OF SALT AND PROCESSED FOODS

Eating a lot of salt can contribute to high blood pressure, which is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease. The American Heart Association recommends no more than a teaspoon of salt a day for an adult.

12. SUBSTITUTE REDUCED SODIUM VERSIONS, OR SALT SUBSTITUTES

Choose your condiments and packaged foods carefully, looking for foods labeled sodium free, low sodium, or unsalted. Better yet, use fresh ingredients and cook without salt.

13. USE SPICES FOR FLAVOR

Cooking for yourself enables you to have more control over your salt intake. Make use of the many delicious alternatives to salt. Try fresh herbs like basil, thyme, or chives. In the dried spices aisle, you can find alternatives such as allspice, bay leaves, or cumin to flavor your meal without sodium.

14. REDUCE CANNED OR PROCESSED FOODS

Much of the salt you eat comes from canned or processed foods like soups or frozen dinners—even poultry or other meats often have salt added during processing. Eating fresh foods, looking for unsalted meats, and making your own soups or stews can dramatically reduce your sodium intake.

15. CUT OUT ARTIFICIAL TRANS FATS

As well as raising your LDL, or “bad” cholesterol level, which can increase your risk for heart attack and stroke, artificial trans fat also lowers your levels of HDL or “good” cholesterol, which can put you at increased cardiovascular risk. Many countries have effectively outlawed the use of artificial trans-fats in commercially prepared food, but it’s worth checking labels and avoiding anything with “partially hydrogenated” oil in the ingredients, even if it claims to be “trans fat-free.”

16. LIMIT SATURATED FATS

Saturated fats are mainly found in tropical oils, dairy, and red meat and should be limited to no more than 10% of your daily calorie intake. Enjoy dairy in moderation and vary the protein sources in your diet, opting for fish, skinless chicken, eggs, and vegetarian sources of protein where you can.

17. EAT MORE HEALTY FATS

Eating foods rich in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fat can improve blood cholesterol levels and lower your risk of heart disease. Eat omega 3 fatty acids every day, from fatty fish such as salmon, trout, or herring, or from flaxseed, kale, spinach, or walnuts. Other sources of healthy fats include olive oil, avocados, nuts, and nut butters.

18. WHEN CUTTING BACK ON HEART-RISKY FOODS

Such unhealthy fats, it’s important to replace them with healthy alternatives. Replacing processed meats with fish or chicken, for example, can make a positive difference to your health. But switching animal fats for refined carbohydrates, though—such as replacing your breakfast bacon with a donut or sugary cereal—won’t do anything to lower your risk for cardiovascular disease.

19. OPT FOR UNREFINED

Instead of sugary soft drinks, white bread, pasta and processed foods like pizza, opt for unrefined whole grains like whole wheat or multigrain bread, brown rice, barley, quinoa, bran cereal, oatmeal, and non-starchy vegetables.

20. FIBER

A diet high in fiber can lower “bad” cholesterol and provide nutrients that help protect against heart disease. As an added bonus, it may also help you to lose weight. Since fiber stays in the stomach longer than other foods, the feeling of fullness will stay with you much longer, helping you to eat less. Fiber also moves fat through your digestive system quicker so less of it is absorbed. And when you fill up on fiber, you’ll also have more energy for exercising.