Keeping Heart health and strong

Keeping Heart health and strong

This next week we walk the Coasttrek and why!!

Women are especially at risk for heart disease, but a few small lifestyle changes can make a big difference.  Cardiovascular disease remains the No 1 cause of death in the U.S. and Australian for men and women. The rates have been on the decline over the last 2 decades, UNTIL now. 

So, why?
As a dietitian and health food line developer, it is the constant availability of processed food leading to poor eating habits and lack of movement that are a major factor.  The good news is that there are small, easy steps you can take to help keep your heart health starting today.

Here are some easy changes you can start today!

1. Swap Out Fats and moderate
Not all fats are created equal, and it’s the type and quantity that matters. It use to be about low fat but now it’s all about healthy fats.
The saturated fats in animal products, dairy and fast foods should be limited, whilst trans -saturated fats found in fried and packaged foods should be totally avoided.

  • Swap to avocados, nuts, seeds, olive oil and fatty fish like salmon and sardines.
  • Even a 1/2 tablespoon swap to olive oil per day made significant difference in one study of 90K people. found that consuming just a half-tablespoon of olive oil a day in place of animal-based fats (think: butter) or margarine is linked to a significantly lower risk of cardiovascular disease.

Aim to keep saturated fat intake to 10 percent or less of your daily calories.

2. Eat Fibre Fibre Fibre
One big area of improvement by far is the fibre department. With the emergence of “Keto and high protein diets” over the past decades, unfortunately its slashed the out fibre and no wonder less than 5% of population eat enough fibre. No wonder we are going backward.
It's the Soluble fibre that make the difference with heart health — the type thats found in oat bran, barley, nuts and seeds, beans, lentils, peas and some fruits and vegetables —this type of fibre helps lower cholesterol and keeps you full helping the waistline.

Women should aim for a minimum of 25 grams of fibre per day, and men should get 38 grams, with a focus on plant-based foods.
Studies show that eating mostly plants vs animals is associated with better hearty health and less cardiovascular disease.

3. Eating fatty fish like salmon or any fish help lower cholesterol
Fish and seafood are great sources of protein and unlike meats have less saturated fats making them an ideal inclusion in your weekly plan. Fish specifically fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, sardines and albacore tuna at least twice a week are highly recommended.
Why? They're good sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which can lower triglyceride levels, slow the buildup of plaque in the arteries and keep blood pressure at bay.  Without going overboard as we want to keep to caution with mercury….

4. Drink less
It has taken a while and with the french Paradox the jury is still out on the effect alcohol has on our hearts. Current research shows that it may slightly elevate HDL cholesterol levels, aka your "good" cholesterol. However the argument is that we can get the same benefits for exercise and eating a rich diet of fruits and vegetables..

5. Get Regular Checkups
Seeing your doctor for regular annual check up including blood pressure and cholesterol testing and monitoring, especially if heart disease is in the family. In this way you can seek help with a registered dietitian and other allied health to help with any early signs T cardiovascular issues, and you can work together to create a heart-healthy plan to lower your risk.

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