Sept. 29 is World Heart Day, aimed to raise awareness of cardiovascular disease. Since eating a healthy diet can positively impact several risk factors of heart disease, it’s a good time to learn more and take action.
Take this to heart
Cardiovascular disease, or heart disease, is a general term that refers to a list of heart conditions such as high blood pressure, congestive heart failure, arrhythmia, stroke and cardiac arrest.
There are several risk factors for heart disease – some we can control and some we cannot. Factors we can control often are lifestyle based, including high blood pressure, high cholesterol and obesity, and can be improved with a proper diet. Others include stress, smoking and sedentary lifestyle.
Getting older puts us at higher risk, as does family history. Males are at higher risk and often develop heart disease at a younger age than women.
According to the World Heart Federation, heart disease accounts for half of all non-communicable disease deaths, making it the world’s top cause of death, claiming 18.6 million lives each year, so taking steps for better health can make a huge impact.
Take action for a healthier heart
Make this month the time you take action to care for yourself and educate others on World Health Day.
- Share your story
- Get moving
- Commit to a healthier diet
Share your story: If you’re starting a journey to a healthier heart or have a personal or family story – share it with a friend or on social media. You also could share some of the heart disease statistics.
Get moving: With a little break from the summer heat, it’s a great time to get outside and take a walk or hike or go for a bike ride. Whether you head to the gym, the park or follow along with a cardio, strength or stretching video online, every hour you exercise makes your heart stronger.
Commit to a healthier diet: Even if you aren’t overweight, an unhealthy diet can lead to a host of medical issues. We like this layout of a healthy eating plate from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. It’s an easy visual reminder to fill half our plate with fruit and vegetables, a quarter with a whole grains and another quarter with healthy protein. It also guides us to use healthy oils in moderation, drink water and avoid sugary drinks.
If you need assistance getting your diet back on track for a healthier heart, GIA 180 offers nutrition and weight loss solutions with a trained coach to help you reach your goals. Contact GIA at 865-558-0601 for more information.