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Adolescent Heart Disease

Many lifestyle habits are formed or impacted during childhood. When it comes to long-term heart health, there are healthy lifestyle habits even children can learn. Eating healthy and setting time aside for heart healthy exercise everyday can create a foundation in childhood for healthy hearts in adulthood.

Heart Healthy Diets for Children

Heart healthy diets for children are not very different than those for adults. Fruits and vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, beans, nuts, seeds, and lean meats are all parts of a healthy diet for children.

The hard part is getting your child to eat a heart healthy diet. The best approach is to create an environment where healthy eating is the norm and high-quality foods are available.

Healthy Lifestyle Tips for Families with Children

Be a good role model. What children eat is heavily influenced by what adults in the household eat. Eat healthy foods yourself and be sure to stock your kitchen with fruits, vegetables and whole grains.

Limit fast foods and unhealthy restaurant foods.

Fried foods, especially those from fast food joints and restaurants, can be very high in saturated fat that are bad for the heart. Try to eat these foods only occasionally or have you child choose non-fried options when you go out to eat.

Slow down for meals. Catching quick meals and snacks and mindless eating, where kids eat while doing other activities like watching T.V., can promote overeating and obesity. Try to have sit-down meals with your children as often as possible and limit eating in front of the T.V. and in the car.

Help your child understand the dangers of smoking. It's very hard to stop smoking once you've started. Help your children to avoid smoking so that, as adults, their risk of heart disease will be much lower.


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