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A Healthy Heart What Women Need to Know By Jordan Robertson, ND.

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Presentation on theme: "A Healthy Heart What Women Need to Know By Jordan Robertson, ND."— Presentation transcript:


2 A Healthy Heart What Women Need to Know By Jordan Robertson, ND

3 Overview Surprising statistics Are you at risk? How can you make a difference? Working together for a healthier you

4 What is heart disease? An umbrella term to describe a variety of diseases that affect the heart. Includes diseases such as high blood pressure and atherosclerosis.


6 Quick facts Heart disease is the leading cause of death in North American women Only 55% of women identify heart disease as their greatest health risk Death from heart disease is rising in women

7 Risk factors Un-modifiable risk factors Age Genetics

8 Risk Factors Modifiable risk factors Cigarette smoking High blood pressure Diabetes Obesity Psychosocial factors (stress) Low fruit and vegetable intake Low levels of exercise Excessive alcohol intake

9 A Change Will Do You Good! Awareness Diet Exercise Stress reduction Neutraceuticals Pharmaceuticals

10 Awareness - Get Tested! Heart disease is nicknamed the “silent killer” because you don’t feel most of the symptoms. Simple blood tests and physical exam measures can tell us if you are at risk. Women should be tested as part of their yearly physical exam with their Medical or Naturopathic Doctor.

11 Diet - You Are What You Eat Fruits and vegetables Fiber Protein Oils and fats – Olive oil – Omega 3 fats – Trans fats

12 Trendy Diets – do they work? Trendy diets such as Atkins and the South Beach diet show evidence of short term weight loss. However, these diets have little or no benefit with respect to heart disease risk. The Mediterranean diet has been shown to have positive outcomes with respect to heart disease risk.

13 The Mediterranean Diet Olive oil Fish Fruits and vegetables Whole grains Low saturated fats Moderate red wine consumption

14 Picking a Diet For You A Nutritionist or Naturopathic Doctor can help you individualize your diet in order to achieve your specific health goals.

15 Exercise - Move it! Aerobic exercise has been shown to decrease cholesterol in women. Cardiovascular exercise also decreases stress and improves blood oxygen levels.

16 Exercise - Step counting Multiple studies have shown benefit in women using a pedometer to count their total steps taken daily. Keeping track of daily activity helps with motivation and goes a long way in reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.

17 Exercise Regular weight lifting has also been shown to balance blood sugar levels, which can decrease your risk of heart disease. It is important to consult your Medical or Naturopathic Doctor when starting a new or different exercise program.

18 Stress Reduction -Take This Home! Meditation and deep breathing have been shown in studies to decrease blood pressure by an average of 4.7/3.2 mmHg. Try practicing 2 minutes of deep breathing per day in the morning and at night as well as during stressful moments in your day.

19 Neutraceuticals and Functional Foods Neutraceuticals and functional foods are prescribed by your Naturopathic Doctor at specific dosages and times of the day depending on your needs and goals. Examples for heart disease include fish oil, antioxidants and herbs such as hawthorne and garlic.

20 Supporting Drug Therapy Many drugs are used to help modify risk factors for heart disease. Some of these drugs can have side effects which can be helped by a Naturopathic Doctor. Most research shows that drug therapy plus diet and lifestyle interventions have the best results in patients who need drugs.

21 Common Heart Drugs Cholesterol lowering – “Statins” Blood pressure lowering Blood thinning – Aspirin Others

22 When to Get Help Women often delay seeking treatment for heart disease and may misread warning signs for serious concerns such as a heart attack. A study by the American Heart Association found that 95% of women suffering from heart attack experienced symptoms up to a month before their heart disease caused a heart attack, but few of them sought treatment.

23 When to Get Help (cont’d) The same study showed that the symptoms reported by women during a heart attack included: – Shortness of breath (57.8%) – Weakness (54.8%) – Fatigue (42.9%) – Chest pain was absent in 43% of women If you are experiencing any of these symptoms or others such as chest pain, palpitations, sweating, slurred speech or sudden weakness, you should seek medical help right away.

24 What is a Naturopathic Doctor? Naturopathic Doctors are provincially regulated primary care providers with eight years of education and training to combine medical diagnosis with a broad range of natural therapies. We work with other health care providers to ensure that patients receive the most comprehensive and effective care possible. We are experienced in helping patients with natural approaches that can reduce reliance on pharmaceuticals for many chronic diseases including heart disease.

25 Naturopathic Doctors Can Help Just by being here today you have already chosen to look at your health in an active and hopefully preventative way. NDs are able to address and treat all the modifiable risk factors for Heart Disease.

26 Naturopathic Doctors are Trained to Help You to: – Identify risk factors (both heredity and lifestyle) and develop individualized plans to optimize health – Treat and manage chronic illness – Address the root cause of symptoms and therefore treat the root rather than medicate the symptom – Bring a healthy balance to your life


28 Parting Thoughts Know Your Risks – What are your modifiable risk factors? – What is your family history? Diet with Exercise Find Stress Relief

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