Lifestyle

Cardiologists Share Practical Tips For Heart Health

Cardiologists Share Practical Tips For Heart Health
PHOTOGRAPH: American Heart Association | The death of many people, including celebrities like Carrie Fisher, has put the spotlight on heart disease, the No. 1 killer of women.

The past year saw many people, including former U.S. First Lady Nancy Reagan and golfing legend Arnold Palmer, pass away due to cardiological problems. Such circumstances cast attention on the importance of taking care of one’s heart.

What cardiologists practice in their day-to-day living may be worth emulating. To keep their tickers healthy,  many cardiologists engage in regular physical activity and sufficient sleep.

Dr. Joshua Knowles of The Stanford University Medical Center — who has focused on the discovery of genetic variants underlying cardiovascular disease, particularly coronary disease and insulin resistance — affirmed that “the  less completely sedentary time you have, the better off you are.” Clinical cardiologist Dr. Marc Eisenberg agrees.

Dr. Eisenberg hits the treadmill for about an hour, five days a week. Dr. Knowles also cited the importance of sleep, underscoring that “having poor sleep and being chronically tired are bad.”

Corroborating Studies

Interestingly, the cardiologists corroborated how non-toxic or nurturing relationships with family and close friends can contribute to a happy and healthy heart. They confirmed studies, such as one citing how social isolation or deficiencies in social relationships can possibly lead to a higher risk of developing coronary heart disease and stroke.

Dr. Knowles affirmed that having strong interpersonal relationships does help people become less susceptible to health problems. For him, keeping his family (including his wife, young kids, siblings, grandparents, the whole caboodle), friends and close co-workers close matters a lot. 

Sugar as the True Culprit

Dr. Stephen Sinatra, a board-certified cardiologist specializing in integrative medicine, cited the one true culprit of heart disease: sugar. Cholesterol has always gotten the bad rap for heart-related problems, but Dr. Sinatra said it is not the perpetrator. He cited the good things cholesterol — it is protective and it is a life-sustaining molecule.

He underscored that a sugary diet, and regularly eating food laden with trans fats, plus emotional stress all add up to poor heart health. To promote heart health, slash the sugar, then.

For its part, the American Diabetes Association tweeted: “Diabetes doubles the risk of a heart attack. Take time to understand the link between these conditions.”  In his book There Is a Cure for Diabetes: The Tree of Life 21-Day+ Program, Dr. Gabriel Cousens  stated, “Type-2 diabetes is a pandemic wake-up call to the world to change its diet and lifestyle relying on junk food and high-sugar and high-saturated-animal-fat, trans-fatty-acid, pesticide- and herbicide-laden food.”

Eat Well, Live Well

Naturopathic doctors and heart specialists often cite how adhering to The Mediterranean diet and opting for anti-inflammatory raw foods, and ditching junk foods, can do wonders for the heart and overall health. Heeding doctors’ pieces of advice, especially when they stress the importance of a healthy diet, or eating with the purpose to help ward off serious illnesses like diabetes and heart ailments, may add years to your life.

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