How to Cut Your Heart Disease Risk

You Can Change the Health of Your Heart. First, Remember That Some Foods Should Never Be Eaten!

Fried butter, fried cheese, and fried Twinkies are NOT heart healthy foods!
Fried butter, fried cheese, and fried Twinkies are NOT heart healthy foods! | Source

Preventing Heart Disease

Heart Disease is one of the most common causes of death among adults in the United States. Fortunately, there are many steps we can all take to reduce our chances of having a premature death because of a heart attack. Of course, we frequently hear stories about people who seem to have done "everything right" and they still die of a sudden heart attack. However, this is rarely the situation. Most of the people who have heart attacks die after years of abusing their bodies. It's almost as if some people are indifferent to their chances of having a heart attack. What are some of the kinds of behaviors that contribute to heart disease? What activities should we change in order to reduce our chances of having a heart attack?

Essentially, we all need to watch what we eat, quit smoking (and avoid smokers), get more exercise, and see our doctors about getting the proper medical interventions, if needed. Listed below are more specific details to help you live a heart healthy life.

Everyone With Heart Disease Needs This Cookbook

The Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease Cookbook: Over 125 Delicious, Life-Changing, Plant-Based Recipes
The Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease Cookbook: Over 125 Delicious, Life-Changing, Plant-Based Recipes

Following certain types of diets have actually been shown to reverse heart disease. Why wait until that first heart attack? Change your life today!


Fatty Foods Can Hurt Your Heart

It’s easy to make excuses for overeating. Over and over we justify weight gain by telling ourselves that we can allow ourselves a few treats because it is a special occasion. Unfortunately, we have special occasions all the time … Christmas, New Years, birthdays, trips, and dinner with friends. Good eating needs to become a habit.

Learn how to control your weight. I know it is hard! Personally, I have fought weight gain my entire life. However, even if you will never return to what you weighed when you were 25, at the very least you should try to exercise and watch what you eat so you don't gain an excessive amount of weight each year.

In addition to counting calories, be sure that what you do eat is healthy. Avoid all fried foods by switching to oven-baked, instead. Reduce your consumption of red meats like beef and pork.

Many researchers have discovered that people can significantly cut their risk of developing heart disease when they eat a plant based diet. Eat more fruits and vegetables, and try to eat a nice salad made with dark greens at least 4-5 times a week, This does not mean you need to give up meat entirely. However, try to avoid cured luncheon meats and eat red meat such as beef and pork only once or twice a week. Rely more on small amounts of chicken and fish. Fill up as much as possible on fresh vegetables and fruit. These dietary changes are good for your heart.

Obviously, you should also limit the processed foods and baked goods in your diet. Many of these contain transfats (although that has been significantly reduced over the past few years.) In addition, they often contain more sodium than you realize, which can raise your blood pressure. Finally, they frequently contain high levels of corn syrup and sugar, which will increase your weight problems. No matter how you slice it, processed foods and baked goods are not our friends!

Smoking Contributes to Heart Disease

The most important thing you can do for your overall health, including heart health, is to STOP SMOKING ... and don't start, if you haven't already! Many people assume that lung cancer is the disease most closely connected to smoking. However, smoking also affects your cardiovascular health, increases your cancer risk, contributes to dementia, causes aneurisms and adversely affects your body in numerous ways.

In other words, if smoking doesn’t cause a cancer that kills you, it will probably kill you in some other way, instead! In addition, if you live with someone else, your smoking could be contributing to health problems for them. Why bring harm to the people you love?

Exercise Improves our Heart Health

We all know that we should get a moderate amount of exercise each day. Exercise helps our heart in several ways. It may contribute to weight loss, which reduces the strain on your heart. It also will force the heart to pump more strongly, which exercises the heart.

You will find that advice about the amount of exercise you need varies greatly. At the very least, you should take a brisk 30 minute walk 5 times a week, and work out with weights at least 2 times a week. Do more of each, if you can!

In fact, spread your activity out during the day. The more active you are, the better off you will be. Don't let yourself get too sedentary. Research shows that an hour of exercise in the morning does not do much good if you are sedentary the rest of the day. In fact, being sedentary can be as bad for you as smoking!

Control Your Blood Pressure and Cholesterol

A final step you should take is to see your doctor about controlling your blood pressure. For many people, that means using less salt. For others, you may need a medication. Your doctor will tell you what works best for you. In addition, your doctor will want to do blood work to check your cholesterol and triglyceride levels. It is possible that you will need to be on a statin drug, or a similar medication. Follow his instructions carefully. Your life could depend on it. By following his instructions, you may increase not only the quantity of the life that you live, but also the quality!

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Comments 18 comments

Millionaire Tips profile image

Millionaire Tips 4 years ago from USA

These are all great ideas for reducing your chances of getting heart disease. I have a family history of heart disease, so it is an important topic for me.

mary-deo profile image

mary-deo 4 years ago from Caloocan City, University Hills

Heart disease is one of the most killer disease and fatal threat for people around the world. But then proper knowledge on what its all about and possible treatments to prevent it would do help like what you've discussed on this hub.

moonlake profile image

moonlake 3 years ago from America

Good information on bringing down weight and heart disease. It seems we are all always fighting that weight gain. Voted up

Deborah-Diane profile image

Deborah-Diane 3 years ago from Orange County, California Author

Thank you for your comments on the connection between weight and heart disease. While we cannot avoid all the causes of heart disease, many of them are in our control. We owe it to ourselves and our families to take care of the causes that are within our control.

dahoglund profile image

dahoglund 3 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

Weight gain is not a problem with me. actually, I could use another ten pounds. On the other hand I would not want to overdo it. Always good to be aware of our diets though.

Deborah-Diane profile image

Deborah-Diane 3 years ago from Orange County, California Author

It is always smart to eat healthy foods, no matter how much or little we weigh!

moonlake profile image

moonlake 3 years ago from America

When I had my heart attacks I was 38. We never ate fast foods and fried very little. I never put butter on anything. It never made sense as to why I had those attacks. Shared your hub.

Deborah-Diane profile image

Deborah-Diane 3 years ago from Orange County, California Author

Moonlake, I was so sorry to hear that you began having heart attacks at age 38, even though you never ate fast foods and very few fried foods. What a shock! I hope other people learn how to prevent as many heart attacks as possible!

moonlake profile image

moonlake 3 years ago from America

Came back to add this hub to my health board on Pinterest.

Deborah-Diane profile image

Deborah-Diane 3 years ago from Orange County, California Author

Thank you, Moonlake, for pinning this to your health board. Many people do not fully understand all the different actions that are within their control with regards to preventing heart disease. I appreciate you for sharing this information.

vespawoolf profile image

vespawoolf 3 years ago from Peru, South America

These are great suggestions for reducing chances of a heart attack. We have reduced our sodium intake, rarely eat fried foods and try to eat lots of veggies and fruit. Our evening meal during the week is a green smoothie. We recently moved so I need to add exercise back into my routine. Thanks for a well-written and interesting Hub! Voted up and shared!

Deborah-Diane profile image

Deborah-Diane 3 years ago from Orange County, California Author

Having a green smoothie for dinner is a great addition to the routine of many people. I have one several times a week for lunch. Very wholesome and refreshing! Thanks for sharing this information!

Au fait profile image

Au fait 3 years ago from North Texas

Great ways to have a healthier life!. The same things that cause or contribute to heart disease also often contribute to cancer, so these recommendations can make an even bigger improvement in one's health.

People who follow your recommendations here will feel better if nothing else and that can mean a lot. Most of us know what it's like to feel badly and still have to go to work and meet our responsibilities.

Sharing with my followers.

Deborah-Diane profile image

Deborah-Diane 3 years ago from Orange County, California Author

You're right. Living a healthy lifestyle has many advantages in addition to lowering your chances of getting heart disease. It can also prevent cancer and other illnesses. It will also help you to generally feel better. :)

Au fait profile image

Au fait 2 years ago from North Texas

Most people could improve their outlook and the way they feel generally, by following the simple guidelines you have listed here. Even small changes in diet or going from sedentary to light exercise a few times a week can make a world of difference in how a person feels. When a person feels bad, they don't perform as well or even look forward to things that might normally be very enjoyable. Hope everyone will read this and get some ideas about how they can make their lives better.

Deborah-Diane profile image

Deborah-Diane 2 years ago from Orange County, California Author

Au fait - You are so right that people could make some small changes in their lives that could have big results ... and improve the way they feel. These changes could also prevent a heart attack or stroke. Thanks for reading and commenting on this article.

ezzly profile image

ezzly 22 months ago

Very good article , wish my hubby would stop smoking !

Deborah-Diane profile image

Deborah-Diane 22 months ago from Orange County, California Author

Millions of people could add years to their lives if they would just stop smoking!

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