Heart Disease and Its Connection with Our Immune System

Heart disease affects approximately 13.2 million Americans every year. It is the single greatest cause of death in the United States. About one half of all heart attacks occur in people with low cholesterol levels. Scientists have found a direct link between our immune system and the health of our heart. They have found that a cronic immune response can damage our heart. In response we need to take an active role in keeping our immune system in good shape. Here are five tips to help us to accomplish our goals.

Tip number one is keeping our teeth and gums healthy. Cavities, gingivitis, and missing teeth are strong predictors of cardiovascular problems. Doctors theorize that bacteria from our mouth can enter the blood stream and cause problems through out our bodies including our heart. Good oral hygene should be a regular part of a healthy routine.

The next suggestion is one we have heard before and we will hear again, QUIT SMOKING ! Smoking causes inflammation of the inner lining of the arteries. This causes damage that never has a chance to heal. This causes plaque build up and eventually can cause a heart attack.

The next suggestion is to loose the belly fat. This can be very difficult, however fat in the abdominal area secrets harmful protiens into the bloodstream. So it is important to exercise, perhaps walking every day, to help keep our belly under control.

The next tip is closely related to the former one. Change your diet. This can be a challange however, doctors have found that what we eat is related to our heart health. Fatty foods clog arteries. Foods with a high glycerine index, such as white bread or potatos can harm our arteries also. With this in mind we need to stay away from these types of food. The good news is that there are foods that are good for our heart. Things such as foods rich in omega 3 fatty acids like olive oil, walnuts, and salmon. Foods such as tomatoes, blueberries, eggplant , and fiber rich grains have anti-inflmmatory effects that can help our heart.

Tip number five is to reduce stress in our lives. We all have anxious moments, however chronic anxiety or depression produces a higher risk for heart disease. There are several ways we can try to reduce our stress . One way is to join an exercise class that is designed for that purpose. We can also try a new hobby or meet new people. Doctors have proven that owning a pet can reduce stress and they can be soothing to us so we could consider getting a small dog or a cat.

Doctors are still sorting out alll the connections between our lifestyle, our immune system, and our heart. As they learn more we will learn more. In the mean time it just makes good sense to follow the five preceding suggestions and take good care of our immune system and our heart.

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