Some people think that there is not much you can do about your heart attack risk especially if heart disease runs in your family. They are wrong, I like to say just because you have a loaded gun it doesn’t mean you have to pull the trigger. Having a family history of heart disease is the loaded gun and your lifestyle is the trigger you have a choice of whether or not you want to set off that gun. There are many natural ways to lower and prevent heart attacks without drugs or surgery.
1. Maintain a healthy weight
The more you weigh, the more wear and tear on the body, including the heart. If your BMI is over 30 this easily increases your heart risk by 10 fold. As we all know it is easier said than done to maintain our weight. As a Chiropractic Physician I recommend a multidimensional approach to this problem, eat better, move better and think better. These are the 3 basic foundational pillars of 8 Weeks to Wellness.
2. Move more
As one of our pillars, regular exercise improves heart health and circulation. It can also help you lose weight. Current recommendations are 3 days a week of aerobic activity, exercise for a minimum of 30 minutes each session. This raises the heart rate, burn calories and gives you more energy! Plus you should include two 30- 60 minute strength-training sessions such as high intensity interval training or at McLaughlin Care we like to call it Functional Fitness.
3. Change your diet
If you are having trouble changing your diet you may want to consider some nutritional counseling or nutritional coaching. A diet too high in carbohydrates can be dangerous. Carbs have been linked to Type 2 diabetes and even Alzheimer’s. Those with diabetes have a much greater risk of heart attack and other cardiovascular issues. Replace those carbs with healthy fats like, avocado, nuts, seeds, olive oil, fatty fish, protein and vegetables. Just for the record, the most recent studies show, eating cholesterol does not elevate your cholesterol. So eat those eggs for breakfast they are a great source of protein.
4. Know your Cholesterol Numbers
Dr. McLaughlin says what gets measured gets managed. Cholesterol is a natural substance produced by the liver that helps form cell membranes, hormones and bile acids. However, cholesterol in our blood can lead to hardening of the arteries. As the arteries harden and get narrower, the blood supply can get cut off to vital parts of the body, such as the heart or brain, leading to heart attack or stroke. Know your numbers, what they mean, and which heart-healthy foods you should add to your diet. You should have your lab drawn at least once a year if you have no current health problems. You may even need it more frequently if you a issue occurs so you and your Chiropractor can track it.
5. Deal with High Blood Pressure (HBP)
Blood pressure causes wear and tear on blood vessel walls. This is the true silent killer. How to deal with blood pressure again is to know your numbers. If they are elevated lifestyle changes will help lower those risk factors as well.
6. Eat a low-sodium diet
Too much sodium can trigger weight gain and high blood pressure. Dr. Julie McLaughlin insist on switching to pink himalayan salt. It is a much healthier way to consume salt without the health risks. A quick trick to measuring sodium is make your caloies in a food item = to the mg of sodium. For example a can of beans may have 957mg of sodium and 70 calories, not good but frozen or fresh beans may have 10mg of sodium and 70 calories, a much heart healthy choice!
7. Stop smoking
If you smoke tobacco, stop. It has been associated with heart disease, lung disorders, and a number of different types of cancer. Easier said than done right? Acupuncture is a great tool to help you quit the habit!
Here at McLaughlin Care we can help you prevent or lower your risk of having a heart attack by checking out our 8 weeks to wellness program! Since February is heart healthy month we are holding a free event to learn how to lower your cholesterol naturally! Seating is limited RSVP Today! https://lower-your-cholesterol-naturally.eventbrite.com