Bypass Surgery Diet
If you are about to have heart bypass surgery, or you have just had one, diet is going to play a major role in whether or not you recover well and continue to have long, enjoyable life. Most, but not all, bypass surgery is done because the individuals involved made bad life style choices. Smoking, excessive alcohol use, and diets composed of high fat, high cholesterol foods are things we know are bad for our heart. Although you are going to need to make healthy life style changes in the other areas as well, in this article we are going to be discussing diet.
Immediately after any major surgery it is not at all uncommon for the patient to have a loss of appetite. This will slowly get better and you will be eating again in no time at all. If you are not hungry, force yourself to eat as much as you can. You do not have to stay on any kind of schedule. Until you feel better, instead of eating three meals a day, eat more frequent small ones.
To begin with, I am going to give you the dietary guidelines the American Heart Association recommends not to just those with heart problems, but to those who want to prevent heart problems. This organization specializes in keeping the public aware of problems associated with heart disease, how to treat it, and hot to prevent it. Millions of dollars per year are spent on research, development and statistic gathering. These are people whose advice you can trust. They are not trying to sell you anything. Here are their food intake suggestions.
1 – Eat whole grain, high fiber foods. Consuming foods rich in whole grain and fiber has proven to reduce the risk of heart disease by helping to lower blood cholesterol levels.
2 – Do not permit more than 7% of your calories to come from saturated fat, and not more that 1% from trans fat. Consumption of saturated fats and trans fats is the single most serious cause of high blood cholesterol. High blood cholesterol is a major risk factor for heart disease and heart attacks.
3 - Consume less than 300 mg of dietary cholesterol. - When too much cholesterol enters your blood, it begins to build up on the walls of your arteries, causing atherosclerosis, a form of heart disease. The arteries become narrowed and the blood flow to the heart is slowed down or stopped. Without this blood supply, and the oxygen that goes with it, the heart muscle can not function properly and you will have chest pain, or even a heart attack.
4 – Eat a large amount of fruits and vegetables.- It is best to aim for at least nine serving of fruits and vegetables a day, especially the, red, yellow, orange and dark green varieties. High blood pressure is one risk factor that can lead to heart attack. It has been found that individuals who have a high content of fruit and vegetables in their diet have lower blood pressure, thus lower heart attack risk.
5 – Select fat free, or low fat dairy products. Whole milk and other dairy products contain huge amounts of saturated and trans fats and cholesterol, both of which will clog arteries and cause heart disease.
6 – Cut back on foods and beverages with sugar. Studies have found that people with a high intake of sugar are more likely to have higher triglycerides and lower levels of HDL cholesterol (the good guy) The American Heart Association feels there is a direct link in low blood sugar and heart attack risk, especially in diabetics.
7 – Choose a low sodium diet. Eat no more than 2,000 mg per day. - Limiting sodium intake is very important to individuals with heart problems. Too much sodium causes the body to hold on to its fluids. This puts extra pressure on the heart to pump the added fluid. Sodium also increases blood pressure which constricts the arterioles which forces the heart to work even harder to pump blood to the body's organs and tissues.
8 – Eat fish, especially oily fish, twice a week. - For years physicians have known the omega-3 fatty acids in fish do much to prevent heart attacks. Some studies have shown the chance for a heart attack is 30% less in people who have regular servings of fish in their diet as opposed to those who seldom eat fish.
9 – Consume alcohol in moderation – Though some studies show that drinking alcohol in moderation is not harmful to your heart, like anything else, if overdone it is harmful. Alcohol does have a high amount of cholesterol, so if you are going to drink be sure and monitor your intake so as not to go over your total allowable limit of 300mg of dietary cholesterol daily.
10 – Balance your calorie intake with your amount of physical exercise. - One of the important contributing factors to heart problems is excessive body weight. There is a very simple formula to losing weight; cause your body to burn more calories than it takes in. Beside keeping your weight under control by burning calories, exercising strengthens your body, including the heart muscle. Of course if you are have just had bypass surgery, or are having heart problems at the moment, be sure and only follow the exercise program suggested by your heart specialist.
Following a bypass surgery diet is very important to your future health. These diets has been designed by experts in the field of heart disease and nutrition and have given proven results over a long period of time. You will find your suggested diet will not only give you a lower risk of heart disease, but will give your body a whole new feeling of well being, both mentally and physically. If you follow your exercise program and your bypass surgery diet, it will drastically speed up your recovery time. Not only that, your life my depend on it.