Am I increasing my heart disease risk?

Increasing my heart disease risk is not on my agenda for life that is for sure.

You may be like me. From time to time I think I am invincible and will live forever. Well, maybe I don’t say it, but unconsciously I think it and act like it. You may also tell yourself, “I am too young to worry about heart disease risks ” or “that happens to others.” But the past few years the facts come to my mind that my grandmother, (Momue) on my mom’s side, had a heart attack in her older years. Thankfully she survived and underwent angioplasty (ballooning) procedure. My father also survived heart issues. What he thought was bronchitis turned out to be symptoms of three clogged arteries! He also survived after emergency open heart surgery. Not everyone is as fortunate.

We know the usual heart disease risk factors: poor diet, genetics, age, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, but did you know that cholesterol levels and heart disease can be caused by chemical exposures?

Some of the findings may surprise you

Here are some of the findings:

  1. Fish high in mercury – such as shark, swordfish and tuna steaks. Opt for wild salmon and trout.
  2. Teflon chemicals – the non-stick cookware, certain food packaging and stain-resistant coating are made from compounds called perfluorochemicals. Opting for iron, glass or other uncoated cookware are a few wiser choices you can make.
  3. Rice-based products – rice has been shown to contain high levels of inorganic arsenic, which is a carcinogen. Mix up your healthy carb choices by skipping rice and grains altogether and add in veggies, such as cauliflower or broccoli “rice.” If you do want to keep grains in your diet, try organic versions of quinoa, or couscous.
  4. Tap water – contains contaminants such as arsenic and lead that are naturally occurring and leached in water from older, corroding plumbing. Invest in a good water filter. Check out the water filter buying guide.
  5. BPA – tied to cardiovascular disease and peripheral artery disease. It is banned in baby products but still used in multitude of products in the market. To steer clear, use glass dishes to store and heat leftovers. Avoid water bottles, especially ones with #7 recycling number. Many canned products are lined with BPA unless marked otherwise. Another reason to eat fresh food!

heart disease risk rope in tree

What are a few changes you can make right based on this article? For ways to start living a cleaner lifestyle – personal care, home cleaning, makeup to name a few, reach out to me. I would love to share effortless ways I have learned and now implement in my life. Baby steps are powerful.

sources: The Heart Foundation and American Heart Association