Make a Change for a Healthier Heart This Valentine’s Day
Heart disease is the number one cause of death and suffering in the U.S. Some risk factors, like age and family history, are out of your control. But other risk factors, like smoking, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol can be managed through lifestyle choices, especially changes in diet and increased physical activity.
“Although medications are proven to help address common risk factors, commitment to daily healthy living is critical for heart disease prevention and management,” says Dr. Sandeep Garg, a cardiologist at The Oregon Clinic.
Eat your way to a healthy heart
Along with pharmaceutical methods to treat cardiovascular risk factors, many studies have shown that developing healthy diets low in saturated fat and high in fiber can help reduce the risk of heart disease in adults. When you eat an unprocessed plant-based diet, you automatically reduce your calorie consumption, salt consumption, fat consumption and at the same time increase consumption of several macro and micronutrients and fiber.
“I believe the best way to prevent heart disease and several other chronic health conditions is to eat a whole food, plant-based diet,” says Dr. Garg. “If you want to lower your risk of heart disease, and many other non-cardiac chronic conditions, including diabetes, you should invest time and effort in long-term strategies like diet, exercise, and commitment to a healthy lifestyle.”
Three tips to reduce your cholesterol this month:
- Reduce the amount of processed foods, fats and oils you consume.
- Find a regular exercise routine that fits your lifestyle.
- Periodic health checks with your doctor.
For more information, visit us at www.oregonclinic.com or call 503-935-8000