Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Be Kind To Your Heart.

I wanted to talk about something more personal and informative for today's blog post. Recently, a family member of mine suffered from a myocardial infarction for the second time and now requires a bypass surgery. Cardiovascular disease is a major cause of death in Canada. Many of us fail to recognize the importance of taking control of our own health and utilizing preventative strategies to decrease the likelihood of experiencing cardiovascular diseases in our lifetime.

CVD is pervasive amongst the South Asian population. I, myself, coming from a South Asian background with heart disease strongly rooted in my genetics can agree to this since high-sodium and high-fat diet is part of our culture. I feel that our parents are not educated properly in terms of their health and most importantly how to prevent heart diseases.

I wanted to share with you some knowledge I have developed from Nursing School in the past two years. I wanted to focus mostly on DIET and PHYSICAL ACTIVITY.  Diet and exercise are vastly correlated to heart diseases. In order to prevent or decrease the likelihood of suffering from CVD in your lifetime, you need to make changes to your sedentary lifestyle.

High sodium and High fat diets are extremely harmful for those who have CVD in their family history. Decreasing your sodium intake and fat intake will be beneficial to your health. Physical Activity is equally as important as nutritional intake. Exercising makes your heart pump blood more effectively to provide tissues and organs with oxygen.

Here are some foods to consider:

1) Whole grains
2) Fruits
3) Vegetables
4) Brown Rice
5) Oats
6) Fish, Salmon, Tuna

Some foods to avoid:

1) Whole milk (most dietary products for that matter)
2) Egg yolks
3) Red Meat
4) Deep fried food
5) High fat/sugar Desserts
6) Butter and Margarine
7) Mayonnaise

The goal here is to increase HDL cholesterol and decrease LDL cholesterol. To put in simpler ways to understand, HDL (High-density lipoprotein) is GOOD cholesterol and in contract, LDL (Low-density lipoprotein) is BAD cholesterol.

PLEASE educate your parents and family members to take preventative actions to PROTECT THEIR HEART and LIVE A LONG HEALTHY LIFE.


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