Category Archives: Research

Love your heart – know your numbers

 

The American Heart Association has identified the following 3 measurement as important risk indicators for heart disease:

  • Blood pressure.  Of the one in 3 adult Americans that have high blood pressure, 21% don’t know they even have it!  Know what your blood pressure is.  Keep track of it and maintain it at a level you and your doctor have discussed.  Pay particular attention to the 1st number (systolic blood pressure) as it indicates the amount of pressure placed on your arteries when your heart beats (as opposed to the bottom number, or diastolic blood pressure, when the heart is at rest).

For most Americans this means having the 3 sequential blood pressure readings with a systolic rating of less than 120 mm Hg and diastolic rating of less than 80 mm Hg.

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  • Blood cholesterol.  The most recent numbers from the AHA recommends that your total cholesterol should be below 200 mg per dL.  Consult with your doctor to see if you’re able to moderate your cholesterol levels naturally by eating foods full of heart healthy fats, lower in saturated fat and definitely trans fat-free.

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  • Blood glucose.  Though controllable, adults with diabetes are 2 to 4 times more likely to have heart disease or stroke than the adults without diabetes.  Your fasting blood glucose should be below 100 mg per dL of blood.  Ask your doctor for a quick blood glucose test to make sure you are within healthy range.

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Luckily following the other 4 steps in the simple 7 criteria will help to decrease all of these blood related numbers into a healthier range.

 

 

 

 

 

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Love your heart – lose weight

 

Carrying too much body fat is generally not good for your health, especially if it’s around the midsection.  A quick check of that is to take a tape measure and measure your waist, which is right at the level of your belly button.  The American Heart Association recommends that women be less than 35 inches and then the less than 40 inches.  This weight around your midsection is especially bad because it is around and in(!) your internal organs.  Excess body fat increases your risk for high blood pressure, heart disease, high cholesterol and diabetes.

Slim waist measuring

 

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The science of mindful eating

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October is National Spinal Health Month

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October is National Spinal Health Month

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October is National Spinal Health Month

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Porridge for your Health

Oats have long been considered a superfood, staving off illnesses such as diabetes and heart disease.

But now a review by Harvard University has found that whole grains also appear to prevent early death and lower the chance of dying from cancer.

A meta-analysis of 12 studies involving nearly 800,000 people found that eating 70 grams of whole grains a day – the equivalent of a large bowl of porridge – lowers the risk of all-cause death by 22% and death from cancer by 20%. It also reduces the risk of dying from cardiovascular disease by 20%.

Scientists believe that whole grains help lower cholesterol and help regulate blood sugar, as well as making people feel full for longer, preventing them from snacking on unhealthy foods. The same effect could be gained from eating bran, quinoa, whole-wheat pasta, or a mix of grains.

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Whole grains, where the bran and germ remain, contain 25% more protein than refined grains, such as those used to make white flour, pasta and white rice.

Previous studies have shown that whole grains can boost bone mineral density, lower blood pressure, promote healthy gut bacteria and reduce the risk of diabetes.

One particular fibre found only in oats – called beta-glucan – has been found to lower cholesterol which can help to protect against heart disease.

Whole grains are recommended in many dietary guidelines because they contain high levels of nutrients such as zinc, copper, manganese, iron and thiamine. They are also believed to boost levels of antioxidants, which combat free-radicals linked to cancer.

Victoria Taylor, senior dietitian at the British Heart Foundation, said: “Eating more whole grains is a simple change we can make to improve our diet and help lower our risk of heart and circulatory disease. Choosing brown rice, whole-wheat pasta, wholemeal or granary bread instead of white and swapping to whole-grain breakfast cereals such as porridge are all simple ways to help us up our fibre and whole-grain intake.”

From Irish Independent, click here for article.