Reddit How Long Does Old Fashioned Oats Fill You Up Healthy Changes for Heart Month

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Healthy Changes for Heart Month

From My Heart to Yours: Heart disease remains the number one killer in the United States Please reconsider your commitment to heart-healthy habits for Heart Month and beyond.

Knowing that heart disease affects so many people in the United States, I’m sure many of you can relate to my story. My father had heart disease since I was 3 years old and as a result he died only 10 years later. Great uncle followed him and then another uncle (my father’s brothers). My mother had a heart attack at the age of 80, which was the beginning of her failing health. Then recently, I myself have been dealing with heart arrhythmia. I was fortunate to have great care at the Cleveland Clinic, where an ablation procedure cured my symptoms – but I’m still careful to follow lifestyle habits to avoid future problems.

I also have an important birthday coming up this month, and my health is at the center of my thoughts. It’s true I can’t do anything about genetics or age as risk factors, but there’s a lot I can do! Just because I’m a registered dietitian doesn’t mean I’m immune to health issues – or bad habits for that matter! The last few years have been tough between taking care of our aging parents and recovering from my heart problem. But now that things have calmed down a bit, I’m committed to making more heart-healthy changes. For me, it’s not all about weight loss; It’s healthier and more energy to do the things I want to do. I was already doing most of the steps listed below, and now I’ve added more of them to my regular routine. The steps are in no particular order. Don’t worry about making all the changes at once – just pick a step you believe you can stick with and go from there.

A few basics: If you smoke, stop! Find a good smoking cessation program. Know your numbers: Manage your weight, cholesterol, LDL, as well as hypertension and blood glucose if you have diabetes. Find a way to stay active. Follow a plant-based diet, and follow doctor’s orders for prescribed medications. Some of the steps below can help you get started.

Step 1: Increase your physical activity! Exercise lowers blood pressure, strengthens your heart, helps maintain lean body mass, burns calories, and makes you feel good! Walking is one of the easiest exercises to fit into your day. Experts recommend at least 10,000 steps per day (equivalent to 5 miles) – and yes, it is possible to fit this into a busy schedule. If you are just starting out, walk for at least 10 minutes at a time. Work your way up slowly to at least 60 minutes on most days to meet the Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA) recommendations.

Check with your doctor before making any changes to your routine. Once you get the OK, use a fitness tracker or pedometer to count the current number of steps you take each day to use as your starting point. For over 10 years I have worn a pedometer or Fitbit to help me stay on target. I love the feature on my Fitbit that reminds me to take at least 250 steps every hour! I no longer sit in front of my computer and work for hours without moving.

Step 2: Cut back on high-calorie drinks. Do you drink sugary sweet drinks every day? Just 8 ounces of most sugary drinks contains 100 calories, and most people stop at 8 ounces. 100 extra calories a day adds up to 3500 extra calories in 5 weeks – which can mean an extra pound – or 10 extra pounds in a year!

What about alcohol? Has that 100 calorie “healthy” glass of wine turned into 2 or more glasses per day? Calories in alcohol are quickly depleted, and they can also weaken your decision to control your eating.

Avoid sugary drinks and alcohol for at least 30 days to break the habit. Replace them with sweetened beverages such as water, sparkling water, sparkling water (lemon, lime, cucumber or fruit), hot tea or iced tea.

Step 3: Trim the saturated fat. Animal fats in meat, poultry, milk, milk, cheese, pickles, yogurt, etc. found in salad dressings and fried foods, are full of saturated fat, which is linked to heart disease. Reduce portions, trim visible fat from meat, remove skin from poultry, prepare foods using low-fat cooking methods (baking, broiling, grilling), and read labels to identify foods with polyunsaturated or monounsaturated fats. for better health. There are full-fat or 1% milk, low-fat cottage cheese and sour cream, low-fat yogurt, and other low-fat milk options – and many of them taste great!

Ready to use healthy oil sprays found at the grocery store can help control the amount of oil you use. Choose healthy, vegetable or olive oil to drizzle over foods so you can fry foods with oil instead of frying or brushing.

Step 4: Eat your vegetables and fruits! Eat lots of colors: green, red, orange, yellow vegetables and fruits contain essential nutrients and fiber for good health. These foods are rich in vitamins C, A, potassium, antioxidants, and phytochemicals; and are naturally low in fat and sodium.

Fill at least half of your plate with vegetables, and reach for fresh fruit for dessert or snacks.

Step 5: Reduce sugar. I always had a sweet tooth, but to improve my health and manage my weight I cut back on sweets. Most of us eat a lot more sugar than we realize. It is found in juices, jellies, jams, cookies, candy, cakes, pies, regular soda pop, cereals, snack bars, cookies and many other foods.

Start with obvious sources of sugar and switch to naturally sweet foods like fruit (fresh, canned without syrup, frozen without sugar, or dried – focus here because these are sources of calories). And don’t think that substituting raw sugar, honey or agave syrup is better – it’s still simple sugar.

Read labels: look for the number of grams of sugar per serving and choose alternatives with less sugar. Another caveat: some studies show that even artificially sweetened foods and drinks may still create sweet cravings.

Step 6: Cut out the sodium and add potassium. About 1 in 3 American adults has high blood pressure, which is a major risk factor for heart disease, stroke, heart failure and kidney disease. A diet high in sodium and low in potassium is associated with high blood pressure. There is a lot of sodium in our food. Years ago it was used to preserve foods, but today we have a taste for it and think low-sodium foods are bland. To add some zip to your meals, combine high-sodium salt and spice mixes with naturally spicy ingredients like hot peppers or jalapeno peppers (also high in vitamins and antioxidants), and your favorite free-range spices. change the salt.

Remember to read labels and avoid foods and drinks high in sodium.

Adding potassium to your diet can also help lower blood pressure. Bananas, oranges, potatoes with the skin, and low sodium V-8 juice are some of my favorite sources of high potassium (low sodium).

Step 7: Transplanting whole seeds. Focus on whole grains for filling foods that can lower blood cholesterol and improve regulation. Grains are much tastier than refined white bread, cereal, pasta and rice.

Some of my favorite grains include millet, kamut, and quinoa. I cook my grains in a rice cooker, instant pot, or crock pot so I don’t have to supervise the cooking which usually takes 45-50 minutes on the stove. Many grains can be used to make a simple and tasty salad or can be eaten as a hot breakfast with fruit and nuts.

For a quick and tasty whole grain, I love old fashioned oats that are cooked in the microwave for 2 minutes on high and it’s ready to eat. Top it with some dried cranberries and walnuts to add sweetness and texture. It’s quick and easy, cheap, tasty, filling – and healthy too!

Step 8: Reduce stress by taking time for yourself. With a busy schedule, you need to set aside time each day to relax, rejuvenate and re-energize! Walking is my time to take a break, get away from everyday stresses and enjoy the fresh air, music, or time talking with friends and family. Choose something every day that allows you to take time for yourself: yoga, meditation, a hot bath, or anything that helps you recharge. Allow yourself at least 10-15 minutes a day – Yes, you can!

Step 9: Incorporate some stretching and strength training. Strength training is essential for maintaining muscle mass, strength and balance as we age. Stretching helps us avoid injury and reduce pain. Strengthening your core will protect you from back pain and injuries, improve your posture and help you look slimmer – and who doesn’t want that?

Step 10: Make sure you can do it. It takes time to develop new healthy habits. Try something that you believe you can be successful with, and go from there. The most important thing is to believe that you can make changes that will become lifelong commitments to your health.

Best wishes for a heart-healthy future!

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