10 steps to simplify living heart healthy

If you want to lower your risk of heart disease and stroke, you have to exercise and eat a heart-healthy diet.

That’s the advice you’ll get from your doctor.

And it’s true!

However, what exactly is heart-healthy?

Is it only eating certain types of foods and eliminating others? Or is there a way to get to that elusive heart-healthy status while still enjoying the dietary splurges, such as eating out, that bring a smile to your face?

Luckily, the American Heart Association has the answer with 10 steps that can keep your heart at its best, lowering your risk of heart disease and stroke, without feeling deprived.

Rethinking the focus on individual foods

In fact, according to the American Heart Association team, focusing on individual foods isn’t the best way to level up your heart health.

Instead, you should think of caring for your heart in terms of your overall dietary pattern.

Basically, rather than looking at individual foods as either good or bad, you simply need to work towards balance and variety in your nutrition, while working to make better choices.

And this includes when you eat out, which the researchers say is not something you have to give up.

“You can absolutely adapt a heart-healthy diet to different lifestyles, including one that incorporates eating out at restaurants. It might take a little planning, however, after the first few times it can become routine,” says Professor Alice Lichtenstein, the director of the Cardiovascular Nutrition team at the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University.

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The rules at a glance

The 10 steps they say you should follow are:

  1. Balance food and calorie intake with physical activity to maintain a healthy weight.
  2. Choose a wide variety and eat plenty of fruits and vegetables to get a full range of nutrients from food rather than supplements;
  3. Choose whole grains and other foods made up mostly of whole grains;
  4. Include healthy sources of lean and/or high-fiber protein such as plant proteins (nuts and legumes), fish or seafood, low fat or non-fat dairy, lean cuts of meat and limit red meat and processed meats;
  5. Use liquid non-tropical plant oils such as olive or sunflower oils;
  6. Choose minimally processed foods rather than ultra-processed foods as much as possible;
  7. Minimize intake of beverages and foods with added sugars;
  8. Choose or prepare foods with little or no salt;
  9. Limit alcohol consumption; if you don’t drink, do not start; and
  10. Apply this guidance no matter where food is prepared or consumed.

Common sense steps to a healthy heart!.

Editor’s note: There are numerous safe and natural ways to decrease your risk of blood clots including the 25-cent vitamin, the nutrient that acts as a natural blood thinner and the powerful herb that helps clear plaque. To discover these and more, click here for Hushed Up Natural Heart Cures and Common Misconceptions of Popular Heart Treatments!

Sources:

New look at nutrition research identifies 10 features of a heart-healthy eating pattern – American Heart Association

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Dr. Adria Schmedthorst

By Dr. Adria Schmedthorst

Dr. Adria Schmedthorst is a board-certified Doctor of Chiropractic, with more than 20 years of experience. She has dedicated herself to helping others enjoy life at every age through the use of alternative medicine and natural wellness options. Dr. Schmedthorst enjoys sharing her knowledge with the alternative healthcare community, providing solutions for men and women who are ready to take control of their health the natural way.