A heart healthy routine for women is important

(NC)—Women today strive to have it all - a great career, a healthy mind and body, a daily routine that incorporates exercise, good eating habits and of course, the time to do it all. But little does the average unsuspecting woman know about the lurking, silent health risk that is heart disease. According to the Public Health Agency of Canada, women are more likely to die from heart disease than any other disease and many women still do not know this.

Leading risk factors for cardiovascular disease include smoking, high blood pressure, a sedentary lifestyle, diabetes and elevated blood cholesterol. Health Canada reports that 45 per cent of women have elevated cholesterol levels. No one person is immune, but there are a number of things a woman can do to reduce her risk of falling victim.

Making small and simple lifestyle changes such as incorporating heart healthy foods into your daily diet along with regular exercise can help manage cholesterol levels while maintaining normal eating habits. Foods that are rich in plant sterols are very important because plant sterols help to reduce LDL or “bad” cholesterol levels in the body. More and more foods today contain plant sterols, one such example being yogourt, something we eat at breakfast or as a snack. By consuming two servings of BioBest probiotic yogourt with plant sterols daily, for instance, a reduction in LDL cholesterol of approximately 10% may be achievable. Yogourt also has other health benefits such as calcium to prevent osteoporosis and probiotics to aid with digestion.

“If making simple and easy changes to your routine can have drastically beneficial effects on your health and longevity, why not start each morning by replacing your coffee with a yogourt smoothie,” suggests Amanda Schwartz, a registered dietitian. “What you eat for breakfast sets the tone for the day. Both coffee and a smoothie can give you the same boost – but the main difference is that one is packed with heart healthy nutrients, especially when enriched with added plant sterols.”

Get your day, and your heart, started off right with these recipe ideas:

Morning Energy Booster

Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Yield: 2 servings

1 cup (250 mL) Astro BioBest probiotic yogourt with plant sterols, blueberry flavour
1 cup (250 mL) fresh or frozen blueberries
1 cup (250 mL) fresh or frozen sliced peaches
½ cup (125mL) grape or Beatrice apple juice

1. In a blender add Astro BioBest probiotic yogourt with plant sterols, fruit and juice.

2. Blend until smooth. Add more juice as necessary for desired consistency. Serve immediately.

Cranberry Raspberry Smoothie

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Yield: 2 servings

1 cup (250 mL) fresh cranberries, frozen
1 cup (250 mL) frozen raspberries
1 cup 9250 mL) Astro BioBest probiotic yogourt with plant sterols, raspberry flavour
2 tbsp (30 mL) honey
½ cup (125 mL) cranberry juice

1. In a blender add all fruits and Astro BioBest probiotic yogourt with plant sterols.
2. Blend until smooth.
3. Add more juice as necessary for desired consistency. Serve immediately.

More information on making healthy food choices can be found online at www.astro.ca.


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