A Brief Guide to a Healthy Heart

Heart with Muscles

From the getgo, stay away from sodium. If you are overweight avoid sugar, specifically bread and soda, and this is just the tip of the iceberg. According to CDC statistics, more than 600,000 people in the US die due to heart-related diseases annually.  

With smart and healthy lifestyle choices, you can take care of your health. Let’s have a look at some of the measures which should be adopted by every individual to preserve the wellbeing of your heart and other elements of your cardiovascular system. 

Addition of Fiber-Based Foods

Many people refer to fiber-rich food when they are suffering from digestive issues. However, a better approach is to make fiber-based foods a part of your daily staple diets. There are two noteworthy benefits of fiber-rich foods.

  • They help in reducing the levels of cholesterol. It’s now a well-established fact that increased levels of cholesterol can lead to multiple cardiovascular issues.
  • Fruits and vegetables rich in fiber make you feel satiated, this means you will not get troubled by cravings every hour and consequently, will be protected from an ill habit of overeating.
heart beating graph
Photo by get4net – yayimages.com

Aside from fruits and vegetables, whole grains, beans, chickpeas, and lentils are also a good source of dietary fiber. Also, munch on some raspberries and pears and cook some whole wheat paster while you’re at it.

Cutting Down the Consumption of Cholesterol

Cholesterol, an organic lipid molecule, is the main antagonist in heart-related health issues. Therefore, it is imperative to have a strict approach regarding its consumption. Cholesterol is found nearly in every animal-based food item so you have to take care of the consumption of all such dietary products.

From meat to dairy products to poultry and eggs, cholesterol is a constituent of all the meal items prepared from these ingredients. There is a widespread misconception that low-fat and lean cuts of meat are low in cholesterol. This is not the case whatsoever because you can get high levels of cholesterol from foods termed low-fat.

Therefore, it is always necessary to read and search the nutritional value of every animal-based food item before its consumption to keep the trail of cholesterol intake. In a healthy dietary routine, the daily intake of cholesterol must not exceed 300 milligrams.

Be especially wary of red meat, as there are a lot of health issues that can be associated with it.

Include Fewer Fats in Your Diet  

Tree of FruitIn the craze of losing weight, many people go on to refrain entirely from the consumption of fats. This is not a healthy behavior because fat is one of the three basic macronutrients that are needed by the human body.

However, keeping their levels low in your diet and grains differentiating good fats from bad fats is the key to remain heart-healthy.

Unsaturated fats are considered healthy fats while saturated and trans fats are termed bad due to their detrimental effects. There are several natural food items, which contain saturated fats. The inclusion of avocados, peanut butter (natural), salmon, olive oil and nuts in moderate levels can fulfill the healthy fat requirements of the body.

On the other hand, greasy cuts of meat, fat-ridden dairy products, and various processed foods are rich in saturated and trans fats. Keep in mind that trans fats are the most detrimental variant of this macronutrient, particularly for the heart. Try to exclude them completely from your diet. Sometimes they are labeled as hydrogenated oils on food packages. So, carefully read the labels of processed food before buying them.

More Seafood

Salmon Filet Salmon is an excellent choice for your diet routine and if you choose wild salmon, it’s even better.

Adding more fish to your diet on a weekly or semi-weekly basis is a smart move to maintain the health of your heart. On one hand, they provide a good substitute by replacing beef and lamb meat.

Moreover, seafood is full of omega-3 fatty acids. Don’t get confused by the name of this unsaturated fat because it is actually very beneficial for the well-being of the heart and cardiovascular system.

Routine consumption of omega-3 fatty acids helps in lowering the levels of triglycerides in the blood, which consequently decelerates the process of plaque accumulation in the arteries. With this improvement in your cardiovascular system, you are actually reducing the chances of sudden heart attacks. Fish oil supplements also help in maintaining your blood pressure at healthier levels.  

Weight Loss

Woman showing how much fat she lostEven though all the above-discussed measures ultimately help you to lose weight, you can also take a proactive approach to maintain your BMI.

Engrave it in your mind that obesity is a root cause of many critical diseases including heart-related illnesses. By adding more physical activity to your daily schedule and by having healthy food options, you can control your weight. It’s as simple as that.

Reduction of Alcohol Consumption

Happy friends toasting each other with beerAlthough red wine contains antioxidants that help in the detoxification of the body, most alcohol-based beverages are known for their detrimental effects on human health. Apart from the liver, the heart is the second most affected vital organ from excessive drinking.

Too much alcohol in your daily routine leads to hypertension (link alcohol article), it also increases the levels of triglycerides in the bloodstream. Moreover, your daily calorie count can also be disrupted by excessive drinking.

Therefore, try to cut down your alcohol consumption for the sake of your liver and your heart. An average-sized serving is deemed as moderate daily consumption of alcohol.

Smoking: Don’t Reduce, Quit!

Illustration of Cigarette onto of lung with heartbeatHere, we are just stating the obvious that smoking can compromise the health of your heart. Other than the frightening conditions of mouth and lung cancer, smoking can also inflict its detrimental effect on your cardiovascular wellbeing as well. And now with the addition of vaping devices, you are not much better off. 

Regular smoking leads to the construction of blood vessels which in turn makes it difficult for the heart to properly perform its vital function of pumping oxygenated blood to each and every part of the body.  

For the well-being of your heart, the well-being of your mind is equally important. High levels of stress are linked to high blood pressure and increased levels of blood cholesterol. Moreover, stressed individuals try to cope with their condition through unhealthy lifestyle choices, which also leads to negative effects on the heart and cardiovascular system.

The Beneficial Effects of Taking Novartis Entresto Drug for Heart Attacks

Are you suffering from a cognitive heart problem? Are you so hobbled by chest pain that you are unable to manage the daily activities of life? If the answer is yes, you may want to consider talking to your doctor about the latest heart drug released by Novartis, sold under the brand name of Entresto.

The FDA has approved Entresto for the treatment of heart failure problem. Cognitive heart failure is the most common heart issue. This disorder is characterized by the inability of the heart muscle to provide blood to the tissues of the body.

Common causes of heart failure include high blood pressure, congenital heart defects, lung disorders, alcohol/drug abuse and high LDL-cholesterol levels. Patients that suffer from heart problems experience fatigue and severe shortness of breath.

Novartis’ Entresto drug is one of the latest to hit the market that specifically addresses heart problems. The persecution drug is available to patients whose conditions are categorized as NYHA class II and IV. It contains two active ingredients – Valsartan and Sacubitril – that work differently in reducing the risk of heart failure and repeated hospitalization.

The decision to approve the medication came after a large clinical trial known as Paradigm-HF that was based on the examination of about 8,400 individuals. The study had found that people suffering from heart diseases that took Entresto were at significantly less risk of dying due to heart failure.

What’s more, the study had found that people that took the medication were less likely to require repeated hospitalization. About 20 percent or more of patients today require re-hospitalization after 30 days of being hospitalized. So, the drug can help reduce the burden of health care costs for the affected individuals.

According to Dr. Milton Packer, the professor and the chair of the Department of Clinical Sciences at the University of Texas, the highly effective results of the Paradigm-HF clinical trial should persuade the physicians to consider prescribing Entresto to patients instead of the angiotensin receptor blockers or ACE inhibitors.

Final Piece of Advice

The introduction of the drug Entresto represents a significant breakthrough for heart patients. The drug works at a physiological level in reducing the risk of a death due to a heart attack. The medication is considered safe for most individuals. However, you should not take the medication prior to consulting with a doctor if you suffer from liver or kidney disorders, are pregnant or breastfeeding, or take any prescription or OTC medication, herbal or vitamin supplements.

Howard Fensterman would like to see the elimination of health disparities and promoting healthy living. The philanthropy of Mr. Fensterman has helped in uplifting the lives of thousands of people. He has contributed to numerous charitable organizations that focus on offering affordable medical treatment, as well as finding cures for debilitating diseases.

How Can You Determine If You Have Heart Disease

Heart AttackWhat if you have a heart problem and you are not aware of it? Well, it can happen. All of us are not aware of what is happening inside our body and hence, we live a peaceful life.

All heart problems do not come with clear symptoms; though, some common things may occur in your body if you have heart problems. To confirm or deny that you have a heart problem, you must always get regular checkups from your doctor and if you are facing any of the issues listed below, then you must contact your physician immediately or go to the nearest emergency room, especially if you are over 40*.

Chest Pains

Man grabbing his chest

Chest problems are one of the common signs faced by people suffering from heart disease. Chest problems often occur when you are either having a heart attack, feel some sort of pressure, feel pain or tightness in the heart, or have a blocked artery. Everyone cannot define this situation, attributing it to other reasons of their own. This kind of feeling is not normal and lasts more than a few minutes. Chest problems can occur either when you are doing some physical activity or you are at rest.

If you are feeling pain, pressure, or discomfort in the center of your chest or your arms, back, jaw, neck, or stomach, go to the nearest emergency room or call 9/11 for assistance. Do not ignore these symptoms.

Shortness of Breath

Shortness of breath is another way your body is alerting that it could be a sign of heart trouble as a response to extra stress on your heart. Fatigue and shortness of breath are more common in women and may begin months before a heart attack


You may think that nausea is common and can occur due to an upset stomach. Well, it is possible that you can have an upset stomach for countless reasons, such as eating something that you do not normally eat or something else along those lines. Even though it may have nothing to do with your heart, these are really serious matters and you need to be careful about them. Sources report that people often feel nauseous when they have heart diseases. If you vomit often, then you need to consider this matter and inform your doctor about it.    


Is your significant partner irritated because of your snores? Although it is normal for some people to snore while they are sleeping, when you snore more loudly than usual, then that can be a symbol of sleep apnea. This actually puts in extra stress and pressure on your heart. If you think that this is becoming a common occurrence, then you need to consult your doctor.

Arm Ache

Doctors consider that when you feel pain in your left arm, you might have heart issues. Normally, this pain starts from your chest and spreads outwards, but sources report that people who have arm pains have had minor heart attacks in the past. Nowadays, even the smallest and normal pains in your body require attention; so, you must get them checked instantly if you are facing them.

Weariness and Exhaustion

Do you often feel weary, tired, and exhausted? Then, it is time to set up an appointment with your doctor. Things that never made you tired or exhausted and now affect you can be a clear symptom of a heart disease. If women face this, they should take it seriously and ask their doctor to prescribe them medicines to cure it.

In Summary:

You may experience any of the following that precedes a heart attack:

    • mild pain or discomfort in your chest that may come and go
    • pain in your shoulders, neck, and jaw
    • sweating
    • nausea or vomiting
    • lightheadedness or fainting
    • breathlessness
    • Anxiety or confusion

Please see our heart disease infographic for more information.

Now that you know the symptoms of heart disease, we are sure that you will be able to determine the cause and act in time before things get worse.

*This article is for information purposes only. It is highly recommended to seek the advice of an experienced medical professional or your physician regarding any concerns or abnormalities you may be experiencing.

Heart Disease, Cancer Top Two Leading Causes of Death

Animated man with bacteria showing moving towards himThe CDC has presented a report on the 10 leading causes of death in 2016, which accounted for 74% of all deaths that occurred in the US that year, with heart disease and cancer topping the list.

The National Vital Statistics Report was compiled using information from all death certificates filed in the 50 states and the District of Columbia in 2014. According to the findings, the 10 leading causes of death, in rank order, were: diseases of the heart; malignant neoplasms (cancer); chronic lower respiratory diseases; accidents; cerebrovascular diseases (stroke); Alzheimer’s disease; diabetes; influenza and pneumonia; nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis (kidney disease); and suicide.

“Cause-of-death ranking is a popular method of presenting mortality statistics and is a useful tool for illustrating the relative burden of cause-specific mortality, but it must be used cautiously with a clear understanding of the limitations underlying the method,” the researchers wrote in the report.

Of the 10 leading causes, 8 saw significant increases in the number of deaths, led by Alzheimer’s disease, which increased by 10.4% from 2013 to 2014. The other causes that saw large increases in the number of deaths from year to year were: unintentional injuries (4.2% increase); suicide (3.9%); cerebrovascular diseases (3.2%); nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis (2.2%); malignant neoplasms (1.2%); diabetes (1.2%); and diseases of the heart (0.5%). Meanwhile, the number of deaths caused by chronic lower respiratory disease and influenza and pneumonia decreased by 1.4% and 3.1%, respectively.

Diagram of the Human HeartHeart disease and cancer were the top two causes of death and accounted for 45.9% of all deaths in 2014. They were the two leading causes of death for both men and women. However, men and women diverged in the ranking of other causes of death. Unintentional injuries were the third-leading cause of death for males, while chronic lower respiratory disease ranked third for women.

In addition, while suicide ranked seventh and chronic liver disease and cirrhosis ranked tenth for men, neither was among the 10 leading causes of death for women. In addition, kidney disease ranked ninth and septicemia ranked tenth for women, but neither were among the top 10 for men.