Preventing and Reversing Heart Disease For Dummies is a commonsense guide for everyone. It discusses simple things that you can do every day to maximize your cardiac health and prevent heart disease. You’ll also find some basic strategies and lifestyle practices to reduce and reverse the risk factors you may have for the major forms of heart disease.
If you (or a loved one) already have heart disease, you also have come to the right place. I explore some facts related to coronary heart disease, angina, heart attacks, hypertension, heart failure, and many other cardiac conditions. You’ll discover ways to work with your doctor to control these conditions and possibly to reverse many of their consequences. Lifestyle modifications provide the foundation for effective change.
There are a few things that you should know about how I put the book together. First, you can read the first part of the book (Chapters 1 to 3) for a brief but comprehensive introduction to heart disease and then go to the chapters that interest you most. Or you can go right to a specific chapter that you need, such as Chapter 5 on creating a beneficial nutrition and physical activity plan or Chapter 9 on managing cholesterol problems. Part V contains more than 40 dishes you can choose from to start making more heart-healthy meals right away. If you want to skip sidebars (where I provide additional tips) or Technical Stuff icons, that’s okay, too. Think of this book as a tool that you can use any way that works best for you.
You will find it helpful to note a few conventions I use:
✓ Atherosclerosis is the medical name for the cardiovascular disease process that starts with fatty streaks in the arteries and progresses to large lesions that narrow the arteries and may rupture and form clots that block arteries.
✓ When atherosclerosis occurs in the arteries of the heart, it is called coronary heart disease and abbreviated CHD. This is the common term I use throughout the book, although this condition is also called coronary artery disease (CAD).
✓ In the recipe section, temperatures are Fahrenheit, olive oil is extra virgin olive oil, and pepper is ideally freshly ground (but that’s optional). (See the appendix for a metric conversion chart.)