Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Valentine's Day: Heart Ache or Heart Disease

Which is worst?, enjoying your gourmet 10-course meal that will make you gain a few pounds, or getting dumped on Valentine’s Day before you’re able to start your meal ruining all chances of eating that day. Well, it all depends on which is more important to you, having a fluttering heart or healthy heart. Not to say, the stress of being dumped is healthy for the heart. Nevertheless, a heart break is easier to cope with than any heart disease.

Without a healthy heart, none of the love that you want to experience would ever be possible. A real Valentine would want you to have a heart free of any aches or disease. In American, approximately every 39 seconds someone dies from heart disease and every year over 6 million are hospitalized due to cardiovascular disease.

I am no Casonova; its hard work for me to be romantic, just ask my wife. But when it comes to matter of the heart, I stick to the simple things to reduce the risk to Heart Disease and you can too.

Here is Five Simple Steps that anyone can do with just a little time and dedication:

Review Your Medical Records and History. See your physician to evaluate your risk for Heart Disease. This does not mean that if no one in your family has ever had heart disease that all of the sudden, you can go out and eat a cheeseburger, large fries, and a vanilla milk shake every day. During your consultation, you should review your blood pressure, your cholesterol levels and your risk for diabetes.

Stop Smoking. Avoid any kind of tobacco cigarette smoke, including low tar and low nicotine cigarettes, and secondhand smoke. Smokeless tobacco should also be avoided. The nicotine and chemicals found in tobacco narrows your blood vessels and increases the heart rate and blood pressure. The carbon monoxide from cigarette smoke replaces some of the oxygen in blood and forces your heart to work harder to supply enough oxygen for your body. Quitting smoking now, will reduce your risk of heart disease within one year, even if you’ve been smoking for a long time.

Manage Your Stress. We live in a stressful world with limited amount of time, work and a family to take care of. Stress needs to be kept in check and reduced. Meditation, breathing exercises, and other stress management are essential for preventing heart disease. Also, doing good deeds and volunteering for a charity are activities that can reduce stress, and make the world a better place.

Get Active. Like most of people finding at least 30 to 60 minutes to workout on most of the days in the week can be hard to squeeze in; though it is possible. Exercise helps maintain your healthy weight and can reduce your stress, blood pressure and cholesterol. Programs like Beachbody’s P90X, Turbofire, Slim in 6, and Insanity are examples of exercise routines that can be done at home, which saves time to go to the gym or when you encounter inclement weather.

Improve your Eating Habits. Knowing what you are eating can help reduce your risk for heart disease as well as your waist line. Developing a diet that includes 5 to 10 servings of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, fish with limited consumption of saturated fats (dairy, red meat and coconut/palm oils), polyunsaturated fats, monounsaturated fats, and trans fats (deep fried foods, packaged snack foods and margarines. Some supplements such as Omega 3 Fatty Acids and CoQ10 (Coenzyme Q10) have been known to lower blood pressure. Shakeology has been known to lower cholesterol and weight.

Make every minute count and enjoy life!

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