According to the American Heart Association, heart disease accounts for 1 of every 7 deaths in the United States and approximately 92.1 million Americans currently live with some type of cardiovascular disease or after-effects of stroke. Extensive research has confirmed that a heart healthy diet plan and lifestyle lowers the risk of coronary heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke and certain cancers.
To help kick off your heart healthy diet plan, consider switching to a primarily plant based and whole grain diet by limiting red meat, eating fish at least once a week, choosing low fat dairy products, cutting out refined carbs and sugar and limiting unhealthy fats. Additionally, limit sodium intake – the AHA diet plan recommends limiting daily sodium to 1,500 mg for a healthy adult. Switching out salt for herbs and spices is an easy way to add flavor to your food without eating excess salt. If you need guidance, the Mediterranean or DASH diet meal plans are consistently found to be the healthiest diets for overall health and what we recommend at NutriFit.
Nutrition is just one part of the equation – regular exercise is also an important factor in preventing heart disease. Check out the following info graphic with recommendations for physical activity from the AHA.