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Old 11-03-2008, 06:32 PM
 
442 posts, read 1,293,017 times
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Nearly the entire side of my father's family (my grandfather, immediate aunts & uncles) have died or suffers complications related to heart disease (cardiac arrest, heart attack, diabetes) and as a result, they have all died fairly young (40s-50s, this includes my grandfather). My aunt and my father are basically the only remaining survivors of the family, except for my many cousins, of course.

My question is, now knowing and realizing the impact that heart disease has had on this side of my family, what should I do? I am 21 so this obviously has me very worried about my future! What type of foods should I be eating and what foods should I avoid?? I love to eat dairy (cheeses), fruits, and grains (rice, pasta), for meats I usually try to eat chicken or turkey - occasionally red meat or pork, veggies I try to include in dinner but I admit over the past few months I have slacked on them due to loss of appetite (a phase I seem to go through from time to time).

Tidbit of info about mom's side:
My mom has self-diagnosed herself with low blood sugar, she has migraines that leave her very ill for days, atleast twice a month. My grandmother (mom's mom) also had this problem when she was younger...passing out, migraines, etc. On my mom's side, we also have a problem with "sweet tooths" we love sweet treats and it's difficult to resist them, although that side of the family has never had issues with diabetes, perhaps just low blood sugar?


Quote:
Below are some foods that I eat or try to avoid:

Olive Oil & butter vs. margarine
Ground Turkey & Chick vs. beef
Brown Rice vs. White
Breakfast: Orange Juice every single morning, rich coffee with sweetener (Rec'd serving size of flavor syrup, or 1TBSP. sugar per cup) and a fair amount of cream..usually toast or bagel w/cream cheese or raisin bran cereal)
I love citrus, watermelon, apples, canalope, etc
Cheeses of every variety
I love creamy dishes..pastas, soups - do not eat this every night, but atleast one night or a couple nights a week
Try to avoid alot of snacky foods, but they are addicting and I like to have them atleast once a day
Lots of fruit juices and water
I try to eat organically or the most "natural" foods without alot of added artificial ingredients
I am addicted to sweets and it is extremely hard to completely cut them out

Last edited by FloGrownGrl; 11-03-2008 at 06:45 PM..
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Old 11-03-2008, 06:50 PM
 
Location: Kirkwood, DE and beautiful SXM!
12,054 posts, read 19,657,142 times
Reputation: 31734
If you don't have a family doctor, it is time to get one and let the physician know of your family history. Don't try to diagnose yourself. Start exercising. As a young person, you can do anything. Join a health club, start walking or jogging, take up tennis, etc. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables. You might want to check out the Weight Watchers meal plan. You don't have to go to meetings, but their eating plan is excellent. Just take care of yourself, along with the guidance of your family physician. Live your life to the fullest and enjoy yourself.
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Old 11-03-2008, 07:11 PM
 
11 posts, read 23,993 times
Reputation: 16
accept it and get a good PCP and cardiologist. listen to them, take it seriously and follow directions. take it from and old man who's had open heart surgery and a stroke....be grateful you found out early in life and TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF...NO ONE ELSE CAN DO IT FOR YOU
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Old 11-03-2008, 08:58 PM
 
Location: Twin Cities, MN
638 posts, read 2,802,840 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twotribes View Post
accept it and get a good PCP and cardiologist. listen to them, take it seriously and follow directions. take it from and old man who's had open heart surgery and a stroke....be grateful you found out early in life and TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF...NO ONE ELSE CAN DO IT FOR YOU
AMEN, twotribes!

As an RN I've worked in CV-ICU for over 30 years; and I've cared for patients having heart surgery due to coronary artery disease as young as 25 years old. You are wise to start thinking about what you can do now to reduce your risks of heart disease in the future, especially with your family history. Most 21 year olds think they are invincible and can get away with bad habits without any consequences; whereas you are looking at what this disease has done in your family already.

First off, go see a good primary physician (you may want an internist with your family history instead of a family practice doc) and get a physical and make sure that they do a complete lipid profile (cholesterol, LDL, HDL, and triglycerides) since these are currently our best indicators of atherosclerosis and arteriosclerosis (heart disease).

The National Cholesterol Education Program recommends that everyone over age twenty have a fasting lipoprotein profile every 5 years; however, you may need to have these done more often than the average person.

So, what else can you do?

The National Cholesterol Education Program, the American College of Cardiology, and the American Heart Association recommend diet and lifestyle modifications as the first line of defense against abnormal blood lipids. Their recommendations include:
> a diet low in total fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol;
> a diet high in fiber;
> weight loss and weight management;
> increased physical activity; smoking cessation; and
> an increased intake of plant phytosterols (which seem to block the bodys' absorption of cholesterol).

If you can afford to see a nutritionist, having someone design a diet just for you and your needs may be very helpful too. And exercise, exercise, exercise! Establish a lifestyle with lots of physical activity that you enjoy doing.

Hope that helps some!
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Old 11-06-2008, 12:19 AM
 
1 posts, read 1,932 times
Reputation: 10
Default Heart Disease and Chriopractic

Chiropractic is not suitable for acute care of heart conditions. It can be used as a complementary technique for long term care in conjunction with conventional treatment.

A Chriopractor would recommend suitable diet and lifestyle changes, and would also perform skeletal manipulation when appropriate. Regular chiropractic manipulation may reduce hypertension and hence may be beneficial for controlling heart disease.

Caution: These remedies are not meant to be used as a treatment for heart attack. If you suspect a heart attack, seek emergency medical treatment immediately.

To find Chiropractor please visit: http://www.findachiro.com.au/
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Old 11-06-2008, 04:39 AM
 
Location: Ohio
2,178 posts, read 7,804,133 times
Reputation: 3890
Avoid tobacco.
Don't drink alcohol in excess.
Do moderate exercise.
Make your doctor aware of family history.
Eat heart healthy food.
Try to not get stressed out emotionaly or physically.
If you feel any chest discomfort, irregular or fast heartbeats, get to an ER immediately.
At your age any condition can probably be treated and you can maybe live a long life.
It's ignoring the warning signs that shorten's longevity.
If you take care of yourself and have regular checkups you just might be around to see your grandkids become mature adults and experience all the aches and pains that old age brings when you are 80 or 90.
Don't give up hope. Make plans for the future and a long retirement.
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Old 11-06-2008, 09:52 AM
Status: "In an Involuntary Time Warp" (set 27 days ago)
 
7,863 posts, read 10,161,216 times
Reputation: 11439
See a good physican, not a mediocre one--search one out that is progressive and possibly that focuses on prevention, not just treating disease--someone who really understands these things--a good internist. If you live near a big city/metro area, start there. Tell them your history and concerns. Also, start educating yourself about it--nutrition, exercise, supplements, etc. I think you have to really study it well to know what to do. Read, read, read. It's hard to sort out the truth from what's just bogus information. I think taking charge in some way might help you feel better.
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Old 11-07-2008, 11:24 PM
Status: "Invisible cats keep you up at night" (set 2 days ago)
 
Location: Somewhere.
9,761 posts, read 21,618,606 times
Reputation: 7108
Buy Dr. Caldwell Esselstyns book "Preventing and Reversing Heart Disease."
It's what your family has been eating that leads to heart disease. Even using so-called "healthy" oils like olive and canola can raise your cholesterol along with eating simple grains: white rice, bread, twinkies,etc. Potatos are fine, it's what people pile on them that make them fattening.
Exercise several times a week, don't smoke, watch your stress levels, laugh a lot.
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Old 11-14-2008, 08:22 AM
 
129 posts, read 393,146 times
Reputation: 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by twotribes View Post
accept it and get a good PCP and cardiologist. listen to them, take it seriously and follow directions. take it from and old man who's had open heart surgery and a stroke....be grateful you found out early in life and TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF...NO ONE ELSE CAN DO IT FOR YOU
Absolutely true.
I ignored the family facts and just am getting over a heart attack. Now I find that living right and eating the right stuff isn't bad at all. I'll have more trouble down the road but that's just the way it happens.
Live well but not in fear. You have age and technology overwhelmingly on your side.
Congrats on your recognition of the family facts.
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Old 11-14-2008, 09:53 AM
 
13,140 posts, read 35,991,286 times
Reputation: 12077
I'd add the Omega-3 fatty acids especially fish oils (Salmon or soft gels supplements) as they already have the elongated molecules (20 and 22 carbon fatty acids) DHA and EPA which is very protective for the heart. They thin the blood, lower blood inflammation (CRP levels) and lower the blood fats (Triglycerides) and prevenative for sudden cardiac arrest in your sleep. I eat Salmon and take the supplements daily to infuse into my body as i have almost no fear of heart disease even though i'm 44.
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