Nutrition Tips to Prevent Cardiovascular Disease
September 29 marks World Heart Day, a day dedicated to raising awareness for cardiovascular disease (CVD). In honor of helping to spread awareness and prevent CVD, Fellowship Square shares tips to help reduce senior’s risk of CVD.
According to the World Heart Federation, World Heart Day began as a result of a commitment by world leaders in May 2012 to reduce global mortality from non-communicable disease. The World Heart Federation created World Heart Day to inform “people around the globe that CVD, including heart disease and stroke, is the world’s leading cause of death claiming 17.5 million lives each year, and highlights the actions that individuals can take to prevent and control CVD.”
This day is dedicated to helping people around the world “take charge of their heart health… and encourage heart-healthy living across the world.” And that begins with a visit to a healthcare professional to request some specific checks including:
Blood Glucose — According to the World Heart Federation, CVD is to blame for 60 percent of all deaths in diabetics. High blood glucose is a sign of diabetes, and if it goes undiagnosed and untreated, it can increase the risk of heart disease and stroke.
Blood Pressure — High blood pressure is the top risk factor for CVD, even dubbed the silent killer, due to the fact that it has little to no warning signs or symptoms.
Other important tests and “checks” are cholesterol levels, weight and body mass index. Based on these numbers, a healthcare professional can help come up with a treatment and nutrition plan. Eating properly is one of the best ways to maintain a healthy heart, as well as exercising and avoiding smoking. At any age, these nutrition tips can lead to a happy, healthy heart and reduce risk of CVD:
- Limit sugary drinks, even 100 percent fruit juices that still have a lot of “natural” sugars.
- Chose whole versions of food (such as eating fruit instead of drinking that fruit juice), and aim to eat five servings of fruit and vegetables each day. Smoothies are a great way to add those servings into any meal.
- Limit alcohol consumption.
- Avoid process and prepackaged foods, which are loaded with “hidden” salt, sugar and even fat.
- Get in the kitchen — instead of eating out. Making one’s one meals ensures control over unwanted added ingredients.
Fellowship Square hopes all seniors recognize how important it is to make healthy nutrition choices in order to maintain heart health. For more information about World Heart Day, click here.