Seven steps to a healthy heart

September 20, 2011

Seven steps to a healthy heart

During your busy day, do you think about your heart?  Do you make heart healthy choices?  It’s easy to find the answers by taking this online quiz.

The American Heart Association has narrowed heart healthy living to a list of Life’s Simple Seven. I wasn’t surprised to see that food choices influence five of the seven areas that affect your heart health.

Eat Heart HealthyThink about the list:

  1. Get active
  2. Control cholesterol
  3. Eat Better
  4. Manage blood pressure
  5. Lose Weight
  6. Reduce blood sugar
  7. Stop smoking

Food choices help to control cholesterol, manage blood pressure, lose weight, and reduce blood sugar.  How do we do it? After taking the quiz, you will see areas that you need to work on to promote your health.  And then, in my blogs, I will provide some additional suggestions.  Take the quiz soon and let me know how you’re doing!

  1. Kathy Cardwell

    What if I do all of these thing. I am the right weight, I exercise regularly, I have a very healthy diet, I have low blood pressure, normal blood sugar levels and I don't smoke but I have high chlorestterol (around 200-210.) I am 53 years old. What should I do.? Would you advise taking chlosterol low medication? Thanks for any advise. Kathy

  2. Toni Kuehneman, MS, RD, LMNT

    Hi Kathy - I need more information in order to answer your question. In the last five years, the entire lipid panel is more important than just the cholesterol number. The doctor looks at your HDL (good cholesterol) and your LDL (the lousy cholesterol) numbers. HDL of 60 or more is considered protective, but it does raise your total cholesterol number. In this case it would not be a concern. If your LDL number is over 130 than it would be more a cause of concern. LDL between 100-130 is considered near optimal. A LDL of 100 or less is considered optimal. Your lipid panel should have included a cholesterol/HDL ratio. If that ratio is less than 4.4, then you are doing fine. Check your numbers. My post for this week discusses fat and the post for next week discusses fiber. The two ways to decrease cholesterol are limiting saturated fat, avoiding trans fat, and increasing soluble fiber. I think these posts will provide you with helpful information! Thanks for reading, Toni

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