CHICAGO - Red snapper, sweet potatoes, green salads, mandarin oranges, and strawberries are healthy, colorful foods that may promote good vascular health. Eat Right with Color is the theme for National Nutrition Month this March sponsored by the American Dietetic Association.
“A healthy diet helps maintain good vascular health,” said Niten Singh, MD, a member of the Society for Vascular Surgery®. “Blueberries, kidney beans, avocados, and carrots are healthy, colorful food choices that may promote vascular wellness. Eating healthy foods affects the body’s cholesterol levels, blood pressure levels, and body weight. These are important for healthy veins and arteries.”
The new 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, created by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), encourages Americans to eat:
• more fruits and vegetables
• whole grains
• low-fat milk products
• lean meats, beans, eggs, nuts
• foods low in saturated fats, trans fats, cholesterol, salt, and added sugar.
The USDA Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) Eating Plan encourages Americans to limit their sodium intake in order to lower high blood pressure (hypertension), a risk factor for carotid artery disease or stroke.
Stroke is the fourth leading cause of death in America according to 2010 National Vital Statistics. Last year, 137,000 Americans died from strokes. The American Stroke Association estimated that Americans paid $73.7 billion for stroke-related medical costs and disability in 2010.
As a vascular surgeon, Dr. Singh encourages Americans to control their blood pressure and cholesterol with healthy food choices. In addition, he suggests:
• moderate physical activity such as walking 30 minutes daily
• not smoking
• a healthy body weight.
An annual cholesterol blood test is recommended for persons who are at-risk of high cholesterol. If needed, medications are available to help lower cholesterol.
For more information on vascular wellness, visit VascularWeb.org®.
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About the Society for Vascular Surgery
The Society for Vascular Surgery® (SVS) is a not-for-profit professional medical society, composed primarily of vascular surgeons, that seeks to advance excellence and innovation in vascular health through education, advocacy, research, and public awareness. SVS is the national advocate for 3,370 specialty-trained vascular surgeons and other medical professionals who are dedicated to the prevention and cure of vascular disease. Visit its Web site at VascularWeb.org®. Follow SVS on Facebook and Twitter.