Cardiovascular Health – Heart Disease Prevention Through Healthy Heart Diet
Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the top killer in the world claiming 12 million lives each year, an alarming figure that is soaring annually. CVD is a collective term which includes not only coronary heart disease (CHD), but also stroke and all other diseases of the heart and circulation. It causes 35 per cent of deaths in the UK, killing around 200,000 people. About half of the deaths from CVD in the UK are from CHD and more than a quarter from stroke. Although the death rate from heart disease in the UK is falling, it still remains one of the highest in the world, claiming one victim every six minutes. It is a disease that affects men and women, accounting for one in five deaths in men and one in seven deaths in women. It kills three times more women than breast cancer.
These alarming statistics might only be the tip of the iceberg. Heart disease also leads to ill health which can be debilitating, impacting a sufferer’s daily life tremendously. Heart disease has evolved into a common lethal epidemic and we are all likely to know someone – a member of the family, a friend, or colleague – who has been affected by this disease. The tragedy is further compounded when heart disease and heart attacks are premature, cheating the victim of either a healthy quality of life or their natural life expectancy.
Cardiovascular Disease Prevention – Changing Your Life to Reduce Heart Risk Factors
On a brighter note, the intriguing news is that heart disease is potentially avoidable and preventable. Most of the risk factors for heart disease can be reduced by following a healthy lifestyle. In essence, this means not smoking, doing plenty of physical activity, maintaining a sensible weight and choosing a healthy diet. Even if you already have heart disease it is never too late to change your ways and the onset of symptoms is a particularly good time for you to reassess your lifestyle.
Healthy Heart Foods to Reduce Cardiovascular Disease Risk Factors
A healthy diet can have a positive influence on the majority of risk factors for heart disease including cholesterol levels, blood pressure, weight and diabetes. It is estimated that at least 30 per cent of deaths from heart disease are due to unhealthy diet. Using sound scientific research as well as consensus opinion, nutritional experts have identified several inter-related, multi-faceted strategies for eating for a healthy heart. Latest advice highlights the overall benefits of a varied diet which, whilst low in fat, has the right balance of different fats, includes an abundance of plant foods and is low in salt. However, the effects of diet are very complex and although there have been some remarkable discoveries in recent years. There is still much to explore.
It is advisable to adopt a dietary pattern similar to traditional diet consumed by Mediterranean population in an effort to protect against heart disease. The epitome of cardiovascular health is to consume fresh foods such as copious amount of fruits and vegetables, fish, legumes, whole grains, and couple with moderate intake of low-fat dairy foods and lean meat. These dietary recommendations is the key to healthy lifestyle to protect against obesity, diabetes and cancer.