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FAQ (Health)

 Dr. George Jacob
Heart Infocenter


Common Sense Steps for Arteriosclerosis/Atherosclerosis

Smoking, high fat or high cholesterol diets, high blood pressure, stress, obesity and lack of exercise are major risk factors for heart disease. You can improve your health by reducing or eliminating many of these risk factors.

Have your blood pressure checked regularly or check it yourself at home. If it's high, have it treated immediately. (Blood pressure should be around 120/80) See hypertension section for recommendations on reducing your blood pressure.

If you smoke, stop, 1mmediately. Don't start if you don't smoke. Avoid, second hand smoke also.

Switch to a diet rich in the complex carbohydrates (with moderate amounts of protein), and low in fat, cholesterol and sodium. 

Eat high-fiber foods that are low in fat and cholesterol. Fruits, vegetables, and grains should be your primary foods. Include apples, oats and soy foods in your diet.

Drink only steam-distilled water. Avoid stimulants such as coffee, colas, alcohol, and tobacco.

Eat (chew) a few cloves of garlic everyday.

Drink few cups of ginger tea a day.

Avoid egg yolks, ice cream, salt, and all foods containing white flour and/or sugar.

Eat plenty of dark green leafy vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, soybeans, wheat germ, and whole grains. These foods are rich in vitamin E and help improve circulation.

Avoid all oils and fat in your diet except for extra virgin pure cold-pressed olive oil or unrefined canola oil (in moderate amounts). These oils contain monounsaturated fat that may aid in lowering cholesterol. Do not heat these oils.

Avoid candies, chips, fried foods, gravies, high-cholesterol foods, junk foods, pies, processed foods, red meat, or saturated fats.

Keep your cholesterol levels under control. The optimum cholesterol levels are:

Total cholesterol less than 180. (100 plus your age, preferred.)

HDL ("good") cholesterol - 50 or above

LDL ("bad") cholesterol - 100 or less

CADRIF (total cholesterol divided by HDL) - 4 or less

Take antioxidants, vitamins and supplements. Preferred supplementations are:

vitamin A as beta carotene

vitamins C

vitamin E


folic acid

vtamin B-6 and B-12

alpha-lipoic acid

green tea


coenzyme Q10

See Also: Vitamin and Nutritional Supplements

Exercise regularly. This strengthens the heart muscle and reduces stress. A daily walk is good.

Learn how to recognize and avoid stress. Some stress is necessary and beneficial. But most of the stress we face, however, is absolutely unnecessary and very unhealthy. See Also:

Learn to relax. Reduce stress and learn techniques to manage stress. Learn techniques to manage your stress in our stress management infocenter.

Take a baby aspirin everyday unless you are allergic to aspirin.

Spent 30 minutes each day doing breathing exercises, meditation and yoga asanas. Also do a recommended imagery/visualization for 10 minutes, 3 times a day.

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