Your Heart Healthy Life

In Real Life, Heart-Healthy Diets Can Be Work

"I want to live a long and active life, so I followed my doctor's advice."
Whether you already have heart disease or are trying to avoid it, the basics of a heart-healthy diet are the same.

• Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables.
• Eat variety of grain products, especially whole grains.
• Choose fat-free and low-fat dairy products.
• Choose legumes, poultry, and lean meats.
• Eat fish, preferably oily fish, at least twice a week.

But adopting these habits isn't easy. Paul Tasner, 62, of Greenbrae, Calif., has cholesterol that zoomed up to 298 five years ago. "That's comparable to having little bits of cheese floating around in your arteries," he says. On a fat-restricted vegetarian diet, he was able get it down slightly. But he has a hard time resisting cravings for junk food, especially when he is traveling on business.

"I still eat like a teenager," he says. "I'm kind of a chocoholic, and I love bread and baked goods." Luckily Tasner has brought his cholesterol down to 150 with medication, but a healthy diet should not be forsaken.

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Last Updated: April 20, 2008

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