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Volume II
February 8, 2008

Heart Healthy
By Bethany Booth

A few simple dietary changes can greatly decrease your risk of developing the clogged arteries that cause heart disease. Decreasing the fat and cholesterol is key but adding good heart healthy foods is just as important as eliminating the bad ones.

1) EAT FISH at least twice a week. Fish is a great way to get the protein your body needs. It is also a good source of omega-3 fatty acids, which may help reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke.

2) FRUITS & VEGETABLES are one of the most powerful strategies in fighting heart disease. Be sure to get your 5 servings a day.

3) WHOLE GRAINS & LEGUMES and other complex carbohydrates supply lasting energy for your body. Simple carbohydrates (those found in soft drinks and sweets) are harmful to the body, especially to those already dealing with high cholesterol. Avoiding simple carbs and eating a variety of complex carbs can greatly reduce your risk of heart disease.

4) LIMIT FAT INTAKE as much as possible. When you need to use added fat, be sure it is High in Monounsaturated Fats such as olive and peanut oil.

5) EAT MORE OFTEN. 6 small meals a day will help control blood sugar, burn fat and calories more efficiently and help your body regulate cholesterol levels. Skipping meals often leads to overeating so be sure to feed your heart and body regularly.

Combine a healthy diet with plenty of water, sleep, and exercise and you are on your way to a happy healthy heart. Make a few of these changes for yourself and for the ones you love this Valentine’s Day, after all, the most cherished gifts are gifts of the heart.

For more information visit the American Heart Association website. The AHA offers an online recipe book filled with delicious heart healthy ideas.

Happy "Heart" Day!

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