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How Healthy Is Your Heart?

February is Heart Month

Heart health is something that should be on everyone’s radar. How do you know if you’re at increased risk of heart disease? Take a read through these factors to determine if you should have a conversation with your healthcare team about preventative health measures for heart health.⁠

  • Exercise – do you get less than 150 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic exercise per week?⁠
  • Abdominal weight – do you carry excess weight specifically around your abdomen (“apple shaped”)? ⁠
  • Smoking history – Do you currently smoke cigarettes, or have in the past? After 5-10 years of non-smoking status, your risk returns to baseline!⁠
  • Diabetes – Have you received a diagnosis of diabetes or elevated blood sugars?⁠
  • Blood pressure – is your blood pressure consistently over 140/90mmHg or do you take medication to lower your blood pressure?⁠

⁠It’s never too early or too late to think about your ticker!

Cardiovascular Testing

Have you had your cardiovascular health assessed? Some lab tests we might consider include:

Lipid panel: Cholesterol, LDL, HDL and triglycerides

  • The Lipids Assessment reports on cholesterol, triglycerides and the lipid transport proteins LDL and HDL. Lipid levels are standard tests for assessing risk of cardiovascular disease, and can help us recommend lifestyle and dietary factors that can improve your cardiovascular health.
  • Fasting blood glucose, fasting insulin and HbA1C
  • These markers of blood glucose metabolism help us identify early signs of insulin resistance and pre-diabetes. Your metabolic health is intricately linked to cardiovascular health. These factors are highly responsive to diet and lifestyle modifications, especially when identified early.
  • Cardiac PULS Test
  • A Protein Unstable Lesion Signature Test, also known as PULS test, is a new test that allows us further insight into your cardiac health. This test measures the traces of proteins that leak from cardiac lesions in the blood vessel walls. By identifying the presence and levels of these proteins, along with HDL and HbA1c, it provides your physician with valuable information to help determine your risk for a heart attack and what steps you need to take to improve your cardiac health

Heart Healthy Diet: Focus on Fibre

One of the most important components of a healthy diet is fibre! Did you know that the majority of the population doesn’t meet the recommended daily allowance for fibre? We recommend 50g of fibre daily for optimal health. Keep reading to learn about the major sources and the health benefits of fibre:

Sources of fibre:⁠

  • Whole grains⁠
  • Fruits and vegetables⁠
  • Nuts and seeds⁠
  • Leafy greens⁠
  • Beans and legumes ⁠

Benefits of fibre⁠:⁠

  • Promotes bowel regularity ⁠
  • Prevents colon cancer⁠
  • Helps maintain weight through promoting satiety⁠
  • Aids in hormone detoxification and elimination⁠
  • Helps control and stabilize blood sugar levels⁠
  • Lowers cholesterol levels⁠
  • Promotes optimal cardiovascular health

Natural Health Products For Heart Health

Did you know that there are many natural products that can help optimize your heart health? ⁠

These are a few of our favs:⁠

  • CoEnzyme Q10 aids mitochondria during energy production and is a potent antioxidant. It can help reduce blood pressure and improve blood glucose control ⁠
  • Plant sterols such as NFH Chol SAP‑15 help lower total and LDL-cholesterol levels and maintain healthy blood lipid levels⁠
  • Fish Oil such as Cytomatrix Omega 3 Forte helps reduce triglycerides and improve HDL/LDL ratio for optimal cardiovascular health⁠
  • Horsechestnut extract such as this product by MediHerb is an herbal product which improves venous health and can improve varicose veins⁠

Want to know what natural products would be best to address your specific concerns? Talk to one of our Naturopathic Doctors for guidance

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