• By Laurel J. Kelly

Housecall: Your diet and your heart — 8 steps to prevent heart disease

August 5, 2019
assorted fruits, vegetables and legumes arranged around a blank heart shape

THIS WEEK'S TOP TOPICS
Heart-healthy diet: 8 steps to prevent heart disease
A diet that's high in fat, salt, sugar and cholesterol can contribute to the development of heart disease. Eating habits can be hard to change, though. From controlling portion sizes and choosing foods that are healthier to allowing yourself the occasional indulgence, here are eight tips that can help make heart-healthy eating both doable and enjoyable.

Alzheimer's: How to help a caregiver 
Caring for someone with Alzheimer's disease is a round-the-clock responsibility, and these caregivers need all the support that they can get. Checking in, offering specific help and recognizing signs of caregiver stress can make a world of difference. If you know someone who's caring for a loved one who has Alzheimer's disease, here's how to help.

EXPERT ANSWERS
How can I recognize my psoriasis flare-up triggers? 
Psoriasis is a common skin condition that speeds up the life cycle of skin cells. It causes cells to build up rapidly on the surface of the skin. The extra skin cells form scales and red patches that are itchy and sometimes painful. Psoriasis triggers are unique for everyone. Figuring out why your skin flares sometimes can feel like trying to solve a puzzle. Learn more from Dr. Lawrence Gibson, a Mayo Clinic dermatologist.

Is walking enough exercise for weight loss? 
Physical activity, such as walking, is important for weight control because it helps you burn calories. A combination of physical activity and dietary changes that include eating fewer calories seems to promote weight loss more effectively than exercise alone, though. Learn more from Katherine Zeratsky, a Mayo Clinic registered dietitian nutritionist.

PLUS ADDITIONAL HIGHLIGHTS
Naegleria infection
Splenectomy
Spider bites
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis

HEALTHY RECIPES
Roasted red pepper hummus
Avocado dip
Sweet and spicy snack mix
Strawberry balsamic sorbet

HEALTH TIP OF THE WEEK
Quit smoking: Why you need a plan
Creating a plan to quit smoking improves your chance of quitting for good. Such a plan helps you cope with the challenges that arise when you stop smoking, including nicotine withdrawal and strong urges to smoke. Although going cold turkey on the spur of the moment may work for some people, the likelihood of your success increase when you create a plan to quit smoking first.

Need practical advice on diet and exercise? Want creative solutions for stress and other lifestyle issues? Discover more healthy lifestyle topics at mayoclinic.org. 

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