Try to have salmon, or other omega-3-rich fish, for at least two to three meals each week.
Omega-3 fatty acids, contained in foods such as salmon, halibut, and mackerel, are important for heart health. It is possible, theoretically, to get all the omega-3 you need from fish. In the real world, however, this rarely happens. A quality supplement, such as Shaklee OmegaGuard® can help close this gap.
Eat from a colorful palette.
One of the best weapons for keeping your heart healthy is a diet which is rich in antioxidants, which fight free radicals, substances contributing to aging and cellular breakdowns. To get those antioxidants from food sources, you should eat at least five to seven servings of fruits and veggies every day. Colors of foods can, to some extent, indicate antioxidant value, so adding at least three brightly colored foods to your plate at each meal, can help you get the nutrition rich food you need for heart health.
Lose weight, specifically, excess body fat, for a smaller waistline, and stronger heart!
Excess weight, especially that "spare tire", the fat around your waistline (abdominal fat), has been definitely linked to poor heart health. Studies have shown that losing only 5–10% of your body weight can make a big difference, and many of these studies have also shown you can significantly lower your risk of heart problems by losing inches around your middle. You don't even need a scale to see if you're making weight loss progress.
Take a CoQ10 supplement.
Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is a substance, similar to a vitamin, which is vital for energy production, especially in your heart. The body can normally make its own CoQ10, but, other factors, such as aging, eating a poor diet, and exposure to modern pollution, and other chemicals found in today's world, may increase your need for this nutrient. If, perhaps, you are using a statin drug, be sure to check with your physician before taking a CoQ10 supplement. If you DO decide to try a supplement, a good option is Shaklee CoQHeart® with Q-Trol®.
Grow Heart Health With Phytosterols
Phytosterols, also referred to as "plant sterols", are a collection of naturally occurring compounds which are found in most plants. Researchers still don’t actually know how many plant sterols there are (certainly over 40), but the most important ones appear to be beta-sitosterol, stigmasterol, and campesterol. Plant sterols appear very similar to cholesterol, but actually block cholesterol absorption in the digestive tract. Cholesterol Reduction Complex provides 2,000 mg of plant sterols and stanols daily.
Increase Vitamin D intake.
Limiting sun exposure, as is recommended for skin health, these days, increases your risk of lower levels of the Vitamin D your heart and bones need. Recent research has indicated that a majority of modern Americans may have suboptimal levels of Vitamin D. Don’t be one of them! Look for a multivitamin that contains at least 800-1,000 IU Vitamin D. Research confirms that many may need even more than that, especially if overweight, older than 60, spend a lot of time indoors, or are darker-skinned.
Increase activity to at least two and a half hours every week.
Regular physical activity, that ugly word, "exercise", promotes a healthy heart. There's no argument on that score. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests that you should exercise at least two and a half hours every week. You don’t have to do it all at once, either. Ten to fifteen minutes at a time works just about as well. It doesn't have to be "exercise", either. Just walk the dog or play basketball with your kids. Give yoga or Pilates, a try. If you’re decide to go to the gym, be sure to get at least 30 minutes of cardio on a stationary bike or elliptical machine and 15-30 minutes of weight training.
Stop smoking today, or, don't start.
Cigarette smoking has been undeniably linked to heart and blood-vessel damage. You can start by finding a short-term reason to stop. How about saving money, or having better smelling breath? It's well known that smoking ages your skin prematurely...and you certainly don’t want any extra wrinkles, do you?
Get regular checkups, tests, and health screenings.
While regular health checkups are always of value, if you are over 40, it is recommended that you have a physical exam every two years; if you are over 50, you should have one annually. There are health fairs and other places where you can get such things as blood pressure checks and chest x-rays. Make your appointment today!
Avoid, or manage, stress.
We live in stressful times, and, over time, chronic stress wreaks havoc on our bodies. In fact, one noted researcher has named stress THE biggest risk factor for many life threatening diseases and conditions. Stress can slow digestion, weaken immune system function, and is dangerous to heart health. There are many ways to reduce and manage stress, including exercise, meditation, spending time away from computers and cell phones, and just simply laughing more.
As you can understand, our heart health depends a lot on the choices we make every day. There are many choices within YOUR control!
Good luck on your pursuit of heart health!