Eat Like a Woman brings together the latest in women’s health science, including the mind-body and food-based approaches to improve brain and emotional health, dramatically reduce stress and improve the quality of your life.
There are sex differences in cardiovascular disease. One in three women will die from heart disease, making it the #1 killer of women.
Most women are unaware of their risk for heart disease and fear breast cancer more than any other disease. Cardiovascular disease kills roughly ten times more women each year than breast cancer. And many doctors fail to discuss heart health issues with their female patients.
Doctors can often diagnose a heart attack by looking at a patient’s symptoms, but women are more likely than men to have more subtle symptoms including:
- Discomfort in the neck, shoulders, or abdomen
- Nausea or vomiting
- Shortness of breath
- Lightheadedness or dizziness
- Extreme fatigue
- Chest pain
- Gastrointestinal distress
Women are less likely than men to experience obvious chest pain or discomfort as a warning sign of a heart attack.
A woman’s risk of heart disease increases during midlife, partly because her body stops producing estrogen. Luckily, there’s a lot you can do to prevent your chances of getting cardiovascular disease:
- Be aware of your blood pressure and cholesterol level. Maintain healthy eating habits with a diet that is low in saturated fat, cholesterol, and salt.
- Smoking is a greater risk factor for heart disease in women than in men. Tobacco use can increase your chances for all sorts of heart problems. If you smoke, you should stop to reduce your risk.
- Regular and moderate exercise can keep your heart healthy and help lower your risk of heart disease and stroke.
Eat Like a Woman and reduce your risk of heart disease.
1. Hot Cocoa: You read right! Hot cocoa is brimming with antioxidants – two-times more than red wine and three times more than green tea. My tip: since hot chocolate mixes are full of sugar, use 100% cocoa and combine with a teaspoon of sugar. Plus you’ll sweeten with the natural sugars in the milk. Yummers!
2. Garlic: This herb is ideal for heart health. Numerous studies have shown the potential benefits of regular garlic consumption on blood pressure, platelet aggregation, serum triglyceride level, and cholesterol levels – all of which keep your heart performing. Garlic also makes a great seasoning for food so you can greatly reduce salt.
3. Salmon: Make the swap from a saturated fat burger to a salmon fillet. While some saturated fat is fine, a little goes a long way. The average cheeseburger has more than half a day worth of the artery clogging fat, which will increase your risk for a heart attack. Conversely, salmon lowers that risk thanks to heart healthy fats. Omega-3s can prevent erratic heart rhythms, reduce likelihood of blood clots inside arteries, improve the ratio of good cholesterol to bad cholesterol, and prevent cholesterol from becoming damaged, at which point it clogs arteries.
4. Berries and Cherries: Props must be given to nature’s candy. These sweet treats are high in polyphenols, which prevent cell damage that creates unhealthy blood vessels and heart. During the winter, opt for frozen berries. Try thawing a bag of frozen strawberries in the refrigerator. Then, add unsweetened, steel-cut oatmeal with the berries their juice and your heart will say thanks with each beat.
5. Quinoa: Often mistaken as a grain, this tiny sprouted seed is an excellent source of magnesium, the mineral that relaxes blood vessels. Low dietary levels of magnesium lead to some scary health issues like increased rates of hypertension, ischemic heart disease and heart arrhythmias. Quinoa cooks quickly and makes great leftovers. Toss with grilled veggies and roasted chicken for a delicious one-pot dinner.
You are worth it! Eat Like a WOMAN!