Heart and blood vessel disease, also referred to as cardiovascular disease, can cause strokes, heart attacks and other problems, many of which are brought on by atherosclerosis, a condition that develops when plaque builds up in artery walls-which narrows them and impedes blood flow. Here are some tips for building on what you already do to help stave off heart disease.
Related: Snack Wisely!
You already have beef with broccoli for lunch.
Heart-Healthy Tweak: Swap the beef for a handful of nuts such as walnuts or almonds.
The Payoff: Women who ate a daily serving of nuts reduced their heart-disease risk by 30 percent over a 26-year period, compared with those who ate a daily red-meat serving, a study at Harvard University in Massachusetts found.
You already power-walk a few times each week.
Heart-Healthy Tweak: Add one more walk to your routine.
The Payoff: Female exercisers who torch 200 to 600 calories per week through exercise can reduce their risk of developing heart disease over a 10-year period by 27 percent, according to a study published in the journalCirculation.
Related: Walking Workouts: Simple Agility Boosting Moves
You already enjoy fish once a week.
Heart Healthy Tweak: Have at least one more serving every week.
The Payoff: Eating fatty fish such as salmon two to four times per week could reduce your risk of heart disease by 31 percent, according to a study published in The Journal of the American Medical Association.
You already are trying to slim down.
Heart-Healthy Tweak: Aim to lose 5 percent to 10 percent of your body weight.
The Payoff: Hitting this weight-loss target can help you lower triglycerides (fats in the blood that in great numbers can threaten cardiovascular health) by 20 percent, according to the American Heart Association.
*Photo courtesy of Pepemczolz