heart disease

  1. Healthy heart benefits of exercise

    More benefits of exercise

    Some things just get better with age -- and exercise is one of them.

    Sure, fitness is important for the young, old and everyone in between. But new research shows how regular activity is especially critical to healthy aging.

    It's as if the benefits of exercise actually get better as you get older -- because seniors who step up their activity have much healthier hearts, with better heart rate variability than seniors who get little to no movement.

    Heart rate variability refers to changes in the amount of time between each heartbeat. These changes are incredibly small -- but they're also incredibly important.

    A healthy heart has very little variability, and changes in that variability can often be an early warning sign of a heart problem.

    Exercise, however, can help make sure that your heart stays as steady as a drumbeat -- and based on the numbers in the study in Circulation, that alone could slash your risk of a heart attack or death from cardiac problems by 11 percent.

    But it's important to note that the biggest benefits  of exercise didn't go simply to people who got regular exercise.

    No, they actually went to seniors who stepped up their exercise during the five-year study, especially those who improved their walking pace or distance.

    In other words, if you haven't been exercising, it's not too late to get started as long as you're ready to get moving.

    You can begin with something as simple as a walk. Get outside, hit the pavement, and see how far you can go. Then, get to work on improving it. Add more distance and more time, and pick up the pace a little bit.

    Consider each step a step toward good health and longevity.

    And if you have been exercising, congratulations -- but don't stop now. See if you can improve on what you're already doing.

  2. Disease fighting health benefits of almonds

    Go nuts  and take in the benefits of almonds

    Almonds are just about the perfect snack. They're tasty, portable and satisfying -- and ounce for ounce, you won't find too many other foods with as many of the health benefits of almonds.

    These delicious nuts can also help fight or prevent major disease, with six new studies showing how a regular almond habit can ward off dementia, protect the heart, help control blood sugar and more.

    The studies, presented at a recent American Society for Nutrition conference, show how even a handful of almonds a day can do more for your overall health than many drugs.

    In one study, patients at risk for diabetes given 1.5 ounces of almonds a day had better blood sugar concentrations and more control over their appetite. They also had higher intakes of healthy fats and vitamin E as some of the health benefits of almonds.

    In another study, adding almonds to the diet (and making no other changes) didn't lead to weight loss, but did lead to a loss of body fat -- especially the abdominal fat linked to metabolic syndrome, diabetes and heart disease.

    Almonds even appear to have a bit of a halo effect. When you eat them, you tend to eat other healthier foods—which is why another study finds that almond eaters have better nutrition and diet than people who don't eat the nuts.

    It's not just almonds.

    Nuts in general -- including cashews, walnuts and pistachios -- are loaded in healthy fats and nutrients that can help prevent disease and even extend lives. On recent study found that eating just an ounce of nuts a day can slash your risk of an early death by 20 percent.

    So go ahead -- go nuts for nuts. Work them into your salads and recipes, or just eat them plain in between meals.

    And for a diet that includes nuts and other delicious treats -- including chocolate -- consider going Mediterranean.

    Read this free report from my House Calls archives to learn more.

  3. The diet and exercise plan to living longer

    Diet and exercise can help you live healthier and longer while cutting your risk of death from heart problems by nearly half.
  4. Married people have lower cardiovascular disease risk

    Marriage can protect your heart, lowering your risk of nearly every major form of cardiovascular disease.
  5. Vitamin D deficiency bad for heart health

    Low levels of vitamin D can increase your risk of heart disease and leave you battling the most severe form of the condition if you already have it.
  6. Celiac disease boosts heart risk

    Celiac disease causes chronic inflammation, which is why the condition can double your heart risk. Here's your guide to bringing that risk back down to normal.
  7. A supportive spouse can protect you from cardiovascular disease

    Having a supportive spouse can lower your risk factors for serious heart problems, new research finds.
  8. Daily sugar intake and heart disease

    Even a moderate sugar habit can increase your risk of death from heart disease by nearly a fifth, and a heavier habit can double that risk, new research finds.
  9. Cardiovascular disease boosts dementia risk

    Heart disease and other heart problems can increase the risk of dementia, at least in women, according to new research.
  10. Lower your heart risk with these foods

    Fiber-rich foods can slash your risk of heart disease, according to the latest research.
  11. The sleep disorder that can kill you

    Heavy snoring can increase your risk of serious heart problems by 80 percent and double your risk of stroke, according to a study.
  12. Magnesium over cholesterol meds

    Magnesium can slash your risk of death from heart disease and stroke -- and it can do it without the risks of cholesterol meds, according to new research.
  13. Effects of obesity can kill you

    Being overweight or obese can increase your risk of heart disease, heart attack, stroke and death even if you appear to be healthy by every other measure.
  14. The life-saving health benefits of nuts

    People who eat nuts have a lower risk of heart disease, cancer and death, according to new research.
  15. The new trans-fat ban

    The FDA's ban on trans fats doesn't mean the end of trans fats. Learn about the loophole that could kill you.
  16. Lose weight and lower risk factors for heart disease

    Obesity alone, and not just the health conditions that often come with it, can increase your risk of a heart attack.
  17. Metformin side effects don’t protect heart

    The diabetes drug metformin is often given to people with heart disease, but new research shows it does practically nothing for these patients.
  18. Oral bacteria one of the causes of dementia

    The same germs responsible for gum disease could play a role in dementia and Alzheimer's disease, according to new research.
  19. Magnesium benefits reduce disease risk

    Essential mineral magnesium could reduce your risk of dying from heart disease by 50 percent and your colon cancer risk by 11 percent or more.
  20. Too much body fat = too much risk

    Body fat is a major risk factor for heart attack, stroke and heart disease -- even if you maintain a normal weight and BMI.

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