• May 8, 2021

Heart-healthy Eating

Consider the DASH diet to lower your blood pressure.

Know your numbers.
Hypertension (aka high blood pressure) is a risk factor for heart disease, as well as many other health conditions. Regular check-ups will keep you up-to-date on your blood pressure; if your blood pressure is too high, your doctor can help you make a plan to bring it down, including changes to your diet. Your diet can play a significant role in reducing hypertension and lead to an overall healthy lifestyle.

What is the DASH diet?
An eating plan called DASH may help lower blood pressure. DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension. And it focuses on tasty, nutrient-rich foods, such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains — while limiting sodium. However, DASH isn’t just for people with high blood pressure. It’s a wholesome eating plan for anyone. And it may also help improve cholesterol and other chronic conditions.

A DASH of good sense.
DASH focuses on healthy foods commonly available at the grocery store.

Vegetables and fruits
Low-fat dairy products
Whole grains
Poultry and seafood
Seeds and nuts
Red and processed meats
Trans and saturated fats

What’s the deal with sodium?
Sodium is known to contribute to high blood pressure, and most Americans consume far too much. The DASH diet includes menus that limit sodium to 2,300 milligrams a day or 1,500 milligrams a day — depending on your health needs. Be sure to check the sodium content on nutrition labels and choose the options that are lowest in sodium.
Source: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute

Talk to your doctor.
Consult your primary care physician; together you can set goals and monitor progress in your blood pressure as you make healthier food choices. If you do not have a doctor, log on to myuhc.com now and choose a Premium Care Physician near you.

Dig in to heart-healthy recipes.
Heart-healthy eating can be mouthwateringly good! And when you prepare food at home, you are in control of the ingredients — especially helpful when limiting sugar and salt. Healthy recipes are being added to this website and the United Healthcare websites all the time. Be sure to look for the “heart healthy” symbol as you explore recipes on uhc.com:

More info …
Check out this article from LiveStrong.com for ideas on how to incorporate more heart-healthy food into your diet: The 14 Best Foods for Your Heart

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