Heart Healthy Eating

Posted by Brittany Reese on February 13, 2017

Did you know that heart disease is the number one killer of women AND men? It causes 1 in 3 deaths for woman and 1 in 4 deaths for men per year. That’s a huge number of people!1,2  It’s national Heart Health Month. What can you do to help combat heart disease?

  1. Add exercise to your daily routine – It is recommended by the Department of Health and Human Services to get 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity a week. It can also be a combination of these two activity levels. For even more health benefits you can increase the amount of moderate intensity aerobic activity to 300 minutes or vigorous-intensity aerobic activity to 150 minutes.3 You can help fulfill this by using some of our numerous cardio equipment or fitness classes. My personal favorites are Group Fight, Group Blast and running! In addition to aerobic activities, you can also add in 2 or more days a week of strength training. This can involve lifting weights, your body weight, or resistance bands.
  2. Eat Healthy! This can be taken in many different ways but specifically we are talking about heart healthy eating. The basic components of heart healthy eating are:
    • Eat more whole grains: Aim for at least 3 ounces of whole grain foods per day 4
    • Increase your dietary fiber: It’s recommend by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics to get at least 20-30 grams of dietary fiber per day 4
    • Increase the amount of fruits and vegetables: Aim for 5 cups of fruits and vegetables per day 4
    • Eat more Omega-3 fats (heart-healthy fats): These are foods such as walnuts, salmon, tuna, and canola and soybean oils4

Here’s a quick recipe from the American Heart Association’s to try tonight: 5

Ingredients:

  • 4 4 oz fish fillets
  • Black pepper to taste
  • ¾ cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 450 degrees
  2. Season fish to taste with pepper. Place on cookie sheet or in a 9×13 inch casserole dish and bake 10-12 minutes
  3. While the fish cooks, combine remaining ingredients and whisk well. Microwave covered on 50% heat for 2 minutes, stirring half-way.
  4. Drizzle glaze over fish and serve

Tip: Add some steamed vegetables and brown rice to add more fiber to this meal.

For more information on heart disease, check out the American Heart Association’s website: http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/

Brittany Reese is a registered dietitian, personal trainer, group exercise instructor and food lover. Do you have questions or comments? Fill out the form below and we’ll get back to you very soon.

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Sources for data:

  1. Facts about Heart Disease in Women. Go Red for Women website https://www.goredforwomen.org/fight-heart-disease-women-go-red-women-official-site/about-heart-disease-in-women/facts-about-heart-disease/. Accessed February 9th, 2017
  2. Men and Heart Disease Fact Sheet. National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health PromotionDivision for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention website https://www.cdc.gov/dhdsp/data_statistics/fact_sheets/fs_men_heart.htm. Updated June 16th, 2016. Accessed February 9th, 2017
  3. Adult Physical Activity Guidelines. Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion website https://health.gov/paguidelines/guidelines/adults.aspx. Updated February 9th, 2017. Accessed February 9th, 2017.
  4. Cardiac-TLC Nutrition Therapy. Nutrition Care Manual website https://www.nutritioncaremanual.org/client_ed.cfm?ncm_client_ed_id=97. Updated 2017. Accessed February 9th, 2017
  5. Balsamic Glazed Fish. American Heart Association website https://recipes.heart.org/recipes/1008/balsamic-glazed-fish. Updated 2016. Accessed February 9th, 2017

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