By: Julia Lott, MS, RD, LD Fresh ‘N Fit Cuisine
February is heart health month so over the next few weeks we’ll be giving you helpful suggestions and information on how to live a heart healthy lifestyle. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in men and women in the United States. There are numerous conditions that can increase your risk of heart disease. Many of these conditions are controllable and can greatly reduce the possibility of heart disease.
Uncontrolled diabetes can cause a build up of sugar in the blood. Also, with a buildup of glucose in the body, blood vessels and the nerves that control your heart and blood vessels can be damaged. People with diabetes tend to develop heart disease at a younger age than those without diabetes.
High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure or hypertension is a major risk factor for heart disease. It occurs when the pressure in the blood vessels and arteries is too high. When high blood pressure is not controlled, it not only affects the heart, but it can also damage other major organs of the body, such as the kidneys and brain.
Cholesterol can build up on the walls of the arteries and those of the heart. As a result, plaque build up and atherosclerosis can occur. This causes decrease blood flow to the heart and other parts of the body.
Not getting enough exercise or physical activity can lead to heart disease. Physical activity reduces stress, lowers blood pressure, and reduces likelihood of developing chronic diseases. Try to exercise at least 30 minutes every day.
Many forms of heart disease are preventable with healthy lifestyle choices. In addition to receiving various benefits from regular physical activity, eating the right foods can help prevent heart disease.
Choosing foods that are low in sodium, fat and cholesterol can put you on the right track. If you’re not sure about what foods to eat or don’t have to time to prepare your own healthy meals, Fresh n’ Fit Cuisine can help. There are over 300 meals to choose from on 7 different menus, so you will never get bored of eating healthy.
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