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The American Heart Association’s Life’s Simple 7



The 7 steps to leading a long, healthy life

Healthy Food, get healthy, womans health, get fit

I have the best, most up to date health research right at my fingertips working at the American Heart Association.  Still, the struggle is real.  Getting and staying healthy is something that everyone, no matter how easy they make it look, must work on daily! It’s funny that we call it Life’s SIMPLE 7 because some days it feels like the farthest thing from simple.  More like Life’s Difficult 7 or Life’s Taxing 7.  Each day as woman, wife, mother, sister, daughter, friend, co-worker, consumer, resident and more, I am challenged to be my most healthy self.  Like many of you, I am challenged by the limited number of hours in the day, the various demands from home and work life and, of course, by my internal voice always itching for what is quick and easy. 

How do I go from knowing how to lead a healthy lifestyle to living a healthy lifestyle?  Today I will share the recommendations of the American Heart Association on the best course of action to get and stay heart healthy.  This blog will explore the ups and downs of being a real person, leading a real life, trying to be real healthy!

Manage Blood Pressure
High blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke. When your blood pressure stays within healthy ranges, you reduce the strain on your heart, arteries, and kidneys which keeps you healthier longer. 
Learn how to manage your blood pressure.

Control Cholesterol
High cholesterol contributes to plaque, which can clog arteries and lead to heart disease and stroke. When you control your cholesterol, you are giving your arteries their best chance to remain clear of blockages. 
Learn how to control your cholesterol.

Reduce Blood Sugar

Most of the food we eat is turned into glucose (or blood sugar) that our bodies use for energy. Over time, high levels of blood sugar can damage your heart, kidneys, eyes and nerves. 
Learn how to reduce your blood sugar.
  
Get Active 

Living an active life is one of the most rewarding gifts you can give yourself and those you love. Simply put, daily physical activity increases your length and quality of life. 
Learn how to get active.

Eat Better
A healthy diet is one of your best weapons for fighting cardiovascular disease. When you eat a heart-healthy diet, you improve your chances for feeling good and staying healthy – for life! 
Learn how to eat better.
  
Lose Weight

When you shed extra fat and unnecessary pounds, you reduce the burden on your heart, lungs, blood vessels and skeleton. You give yourself the gift of active living, you lower your blood pressure and you help yourself feel better, too. 
Learn how to lose weight.
  
Stop Smoking

Cigarette smokers have a higher risk of developing cardiovascular disease. If you smoke, quitting is the best thing you can do for your health. 
Learn how to stop smoking.

Every day there is a reason not to, my personal challenge for today is balancing working from home, writing a blog, getting my sick 4 year old to stay hydrated by drinking water instead of the fruit juices, the list goes on – but first a shower!