Fat, and what every women should know about heart disease

Fat, and what every women should know about heart disease


7 Reasons why we die of Heart Disease, and what you should know about fat

According to the US Surgeon General, heart attacks and strokes are highly preventable. In fact, seven of ten Americans who die each year, die of a preventable chronic disease such as heart disease and diabetes.

A former US Surgeon General, David Satcher, said, “Currently, 95 percent of the health care dollars in the US are spent on treating disease, with relatively little attention paid to preventing disease, which should be a national priority."

Australia: Prof. Worrall-Carter said that in 2006, about 30 Australian women died form heart disease every day.


Here are seven things we’re doing wrong…

1. We smoke

The risk of dying of a heart attack is four times higher in people who smoke than in those who don’t smoke. Many of us are under the impression that the major danger from smoking is cancer but that’s not quite true; smoking is the major risk factor for heart disease, stroke, and cardiovascular disease. In fact, about 40 percent of deaths caused by cardiovascular disease are due to smoking.

2. We don’t walk

Over the past 50 years, health professionals have examined the association between physical activity and the risk for heart disease. The findings consistently reveal that people who are physically active have half the risk for heart attacks than people who are not active. Those studies show also that at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity, such as brisk walking, on most days of the week, is sufficient to reduce the risk of heart attack.

3. We eat too much saturated fat

There’s a reason why health authorities advice us to limit the consumption of saturated fat:

Saturated f. is the most rigid of all fats and is solid at room temperature. Solid f''s. are hard to dissolve and can easily get stuck in your arteries.When you eat too much saturated f., your liver keeps producing cholesterol and you end up with much more cholesterol than you need.Limit saturated fat consumption to less than 10 percent of the total calories ingested per day.

4. We ingest too many foods containing hydrogenated oils or trans fats

Hydrogenated oils or trans f''s. as they are usually called, are produced artificially by injecting molecules of hydrogen in vegetable oils, a process called hydrogenation. Through this process, the oil, which is liquid at room temperature, changes its original form and becomes solid. In other words, it becomes saturated f. In addition, the unnatural shapes of trans f''s., cause our cells to become malformed and to malfunction. And that includes the cells of the heart and the arteries.Read the food label and avoid products which contain trans fats or hydrogenated fats.

5. We don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables

We know that people who consume plant foods regularly have a lower incidence of heart disease than those who don’t include them in their diet.

Fruits and vegetables contain phytochemicals, non nutritive chemicals found in plant foods that protect their host plants from infections and microbial invasions. However, phytochemicals are also crucial in protecting humans against many diseases, including heart disease.

6. We have too much stress

Eighty percent of the population suffers from some kind of symptoms caused by stress which many times end up in illnesses such as high blood pressure a risk factor for heart attack.

One of the reasons why you succumb to disease easily is because tension reduces your capacity to adapt to today’s changing environment.

7. We drink too much alcohol

Avoid high alcohol consumption. 5 to 7 percent of the hypertension we see in people is due to high alcohol intake. The Health World Organization estimates that almost 2/3 of strokes and 50 percent of heart attacks are caused by high blood pressure.



10 Things every woman should know about Heart Disease

Under Pressure
High blood pressure can increase your risk of heart attack and stroke. A higher percentage of women have high blood pressure after age 55 than do men.

Watch your waistline
Being overweight, especially around the waistline, increases your risk of high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, diabetes, heart disease and stroke.

Keep moving
Lack of exercise increases your risk of heart attack and stroke. Aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity on most days of the week.

Keep Cholesterol in Check
The higher your LDL cholesterol level, the greater your risk of coronary heart disease.

Manage Diabetes
Diabetes increases your risk of heart disease.

Butt out smoking
Smoking increases your risk to coronary heart disease.

What’s up Doc
Be sure to visit your doctor for a check-up annually.

Age gracefully
As women grow older, their risks of heart disease and stroke begin to increase and continues to increase with age.

What to watch
The most significant symptom of heart attack is pain or pressure in the chest. However, the warning signals of heart attack can be different for women than for men. Often, women also experience shortness of breath, fatigue, anxiety, nausea or vomiting, and back or jaw pain.

You’re not immune
Heart disease affects women of all ages, races and economic levels.

It can happen to you!

References

http://www.surgeongeneral.gov/publichealthpriorities.html http://www.tobaccofreeutah.org/finalpressrelease.docThompson P. Preventing coronary heart disease. The role of physical activity. The Physician and Sports medicine. 2001 Feb;29(2).



Heart attack facts in women, Prof. Linda Worrall-Carter(Melbourne Leader, News 06.2008)

Shock, horror Hollywood''s big screens don''t always shout the truth. Apparently the stereotypical image of heart attacks attacking men, who cloth at their chests and gasp for air, is not the most common image of heart disease.

Warrandyte professor and nursing research director at St. Vincent''s Hospital, Linda Worrall-Carter, wants to correct the record and share the shocking news that more women than men die from heart disease, and they are ding in their thousands.

Prof. Worrall-Carter, who is supporting the Heart Foundation''s "Go Red for Women" heart disease awareness campaign,said people needed to know facts.

"One in three women around the world will die from heart disease, "Prof. Worrall-Carter said. "People find that shocking, I know I did. It''s typically known as a male disease."

Prof. Worrall-Carter said that in 2006, about 30 Australian women died form heart disease every day.She said many of those were diagnosed late because of the "Hollywood syndrome".

"Women tend to have different symptoms to men. We don''t often get the traditional pain as depicted in the Hollywood-style heart attack, "Prof. Worrall-Carter said. "Women tend to get short of breath, feel nauseous and get back and jaw pain. In older women, these can almost be what you could call a silent heart attack."

Prof. Worrall-Carter, who has a history of heart disease in her family, said women should start checking for heart diseasehistories, be aware of symptoms and take preventive action.

"Get your cholesterol checked, stop smoking and get adequate exercise," she said.

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Know your fats

Not all f''s. are equal. Becoming educated on the types of dietary f''s can help lower your risk of heart disease. Knowing which f''s can lower or raise blood cholesterol is an important step in reducing the risk of heart disease.

Saturated f., trans-fatty acids, and dietary cholesterol can raise your LDL (bad) cholesterol, while monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats don''t.

There are some studies that suggest monounsaturated and polyunsaturated f''s. can even help lower LDL cholesterol slightly when consumed in your diet.


The good fats

Unsaturated fats: Polyunsaturated and monounsaturated f''s. are the two unsaturated f''s.

Polyunsaturated fats: These include safflower, sesame and sunflower seeds, corn and soybeans, many nuts and seeds and their oils.

Monounsaturated fats: These include canola, olive and peanut oils, and avocados. Both polyunsaturated and monounsaturated f''s may help lower your blood cholesterol level when you use them in place of saturated f''s. in your diet. But remember, f. should always be consumed in moderation, even unsaturated f''s.

Omega-3 fatty acids: There’s evidence that intake of recommended amounts of DHA and EPA in the form of dietary fish or fish oil supplements lowers triglycerides, reduces the risk of death, heart attack, dangerous abnormal heart rhythms, and strokes in people with known cardiovascular disease; slows the buildup of atherosclerotic plaques (hardening of the arteries); and lowers blood pressure slightly.

The American Heart Association reports that supplementation with 2 – 4 grams of EPA and DHA each day can lower triglycerides by 20 – 40 percent and suggests that people with known coronary heart disease consume approximately 1 gram of EPA and DHA (combined) each day.


The bad fats Saturated fats: Saturated f''s. are the main dietary cause of high blood cholesterol. The American Heart Association recommends that you limit your saturated f. intake to 7 – 10 percent of total calories (or less) each day.

Saturated f. is found mostly in foods from animals and some plants.

Foods from animals: These include beef, beef fat, veal, lamb, pork, lard, poultry fat, butter, cream, milk, cheeses and other dairy products made from whole milk. These foods also contain dietary cholesterol.

Foods from plants: These include coconut oil, palm oil and palm kernel oil (often called tropical oils), and cocoa butter.

Hydrogenated fats: Hydrogenated f''s. are notorious for raising blood cholesterol. These f''s. undergo a chemical process known as hydrogenation (bombarded with hydrogen atoms). Some examples are margarine and shortening.

Trans-fatty acids: In clinical studies, Trans-fatty acids (TFA) or hydrogenated f''s. tend to raise total blood cholesterol levels. Some scientists believe they raise cholesterol levels more than saturated f''s.

TFA also tend to raise LDL (bad) cholesterol and lower HDL (good) cholesterol when used instead of this fatty acids or natural oils. These changes may increase the risk of heart disease.

Trans-fatty acids are found in small amounts in various animal products such as beef, pork, lamb, and the butterfat in butter and milk.

TFA are also formed during the process of hydrogenation, making margarine, shortening, cooking oils, and the foods made from them a major source of TFA in the American diet. Partially hydrogenated vegetable oils provide about three-fourths of the TFA in the US diet.


How to decrease your intake of bad fats Use naturally occurring, unhydrogenated oil such as canola or olive oil when possible. Look for processed foods made with unhydrogenated oil rather than hydrogenated or saturated f.

Shop for margarine with no more than 2 grams of saturated f. per tablespoon and with liquid vegetable oil as the first ingredient.

Look for those labeled "trans-fat free."

French fries, doughnuts, cookies, and crackers are examples of foods that are high in TFA. Consume them infrequently.

Limit the saturated f. in your diet. If you don''t eat a lot of saturated f., you won''t be consuming a lot of trans-fatty acids.

Eat commercially fried foods and commercial baked goods infrequently. Not only are these foods very high in fat, but that f. is also likely to be very hydrogenated, meaning a lot of TFA.

Commercial shortening and deep-frying f''s. will continue to be made by hydrogenation and will contain TFA. That''s just one more reason to eat fried fast food infrequently.




The benefits of daily physical activity
Reduces the risk of heart disease by improving blood circulation throughout the body.

Keeps weight under control.

Improves blood cholesterol levels.

Prevents and manages high blood pressure.

Prevents bone loss.

Boosts energy level.

Helps manage stress.

Releases tension.

Improves the ability to fall asleep quickly and sleep well. Improves self-image.

Counters anxiety and depression and increases enthusiasm and optimism.

Increases muscle strength, increasing the ability to do other physical activities.

Provides a way to share an activity with family and friends.

Establishes good heart-healthy habits in children and counters the conditions (obesity, high blood pressure, poor cholesterol levels, poor lifestyle habits, etc.) that lead to heart attack and stroke later in life.

In older people, helps delay or prevent chronic illnesses and diseases associated with aging and maintains quality of life and independence longer.


How often should you exercise?

Four to five days of aerobic activity is fine for general health maintenance.

If you''re trying to lose weight, aim for four or more days a week, being sure you take off at least one day a week.


How long should you exercise?

Work up to 30 or more minutes per session for general health maintenance.

For weight loss, gradually work up to 45 minutes or longer at low to moderate intensities in a low- or no-impact activity.








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