Improving Health

Though aspects of heart health can be hereditary, there are many things all of us can do to improve our health. Here are articles featuring tips and guidance for doing just that. 

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Processed vs ultra-processed food and why it matters to your health

To eat well, you need to know the difference between processed and ultra-processed food.

If you think before you snack, it's not so bad

For better or worse, snacks are a big part of the American diet. But between-meal eating doesn’t have to be a bad thing.

Scared to exercise after a heart attack? It’s probably scarier if you don’t.

For heart attack survivors, working out may be the last thing they want to do. It should probably be the first.

Making the most of your health in the workplace

Americans spend so many hours at work that it makes sense to view the office as a place to promote good health.

Popcorn as a snack: Healthy hit or dietary horror show?

Prepared properly, popcorn can be the feel-good nutritious hit of summer. Done wrong, it can get bad reviews.

Are there health benefits from chocolate?

Every year, Americans spend $22 billion on chocolate. While a box of chocolates may seem like the opposite of healthy, experts say it’s less about the occasional small indulgence and more about making good everyday food choices.

The pros and cons of weighing yourself every day

You’ve vowed to lose weight. You step on the scale to mark the starting point toward your goal. Now, how often should you hop back on to check your progress?

Staying active is ‘the best medicine’

Being active, in all forms and at all ages, is one of the best ways to prevent heart disease and improve overall health and well-being. It aids weight control and fitness and it can help in recovering from a heart episode or procedure.

Setting and Achieving Health Goals

Improving health is part of the prescription for anyone with cardiac issues. Understanding how to set reasonable goals — and achieving them — can lead to living longer and a better quality of life.

Are eggs good for you or not?

The egg is standard breakfast fare, but is it healthy?

How to sneak in healthy physical activity during a sedentary work day

Too much sitting around can bring heart health risks, but when your job has you sitting all day, what to you do?

Staying Quit: How to stop smoking for good

For smokers trying to quit, staying smoke-free requires dealing with cravings, weight gain and other threats to quitting for good.

Out of shape and middle-aged?

Middle age isn’t too late to get moving and improve your future health. But don’t wait too long.

Is coffee good for you or not?

Just a couple of calories a cup, good old black coffee packs a punch. It wakes you up, boosts your metabolic rate and decreases the risk of some diseases. The real question is, “How do you take it?”

Get your (exer)game on to make screen time more active

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Resources For Patients & Families

Answers By Heart

Answers by Heart is a series of downloadable patient information sheets presented in a question-and-answer format that's brief, easy to follow and easy to read. They also provide room for you to write down questions to ask your doctor.

Check. Change. Control.® Tracker for Blood Pressure

Check. Change. Control.® uses self-monitoring and tracking of blood pressure readings at home to help you achieve and maintain a healthy heart. Sign up today to start managing your heart health!

Glossary of Heart Disease

The term 'heart disease' is often used - but there are many types of disease that come under this category. This companion piece to "The Heart of a Woman" in our Spring 2015 issue provides a list of some of the most common conditions in the heart disease spectrum.

My Life Check

My Life Check® was designed by the American Heart Association with the goal of improved health for all Americans. Any person can make these changes and even modest improvements to your health will make a big difference. Start with one or two. Know your heart score.

Patient & Family Support Network

The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association has created an online community called the Support Network. The goal is to connect people living with heart disease and stroke with others who are going through similar journeys.

Stroke Connection Magazine

For over 20 years Stroke Connection has been the award-winning voice of support, information and inspiration for a vast community of stroke survivors and their families. Now offered exclusively as a digital publication, it's available virtually everywhere.

Watch, Learn & Live Video Library

Here you'll find informative illustrations and animations about a variety of conditions, treatments and procedures related to heart disease and stroke.
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Life's Simple 7 Tips for Kids

Get your (exer)game on to make screen time more active

Obesity as young adult sets stage for heart disease, stroke

Young adults who are overweight begin to develop high blood pressure and other heart problems that may put them at higher risk of developing heart disease and stroke later in life, a study shows.

What's Growing in Your Child's Imagination?

What's growing in your child's imagination? Help plant the seed about how fun and tasty vegetables and fruits can be!

Kids and Sugar

When you’re a child, life should be sweet. Unfortunately, life may be too sweet for today’s children.

Packing a Healthy Lunch

Packing the kids’ lunches for school allows you to know which nutritious foods they are eating. Here are some budget-friendly, creative ideas to keep kids happy and healthy at lunchtime.

High-schoolers who try e-cigs are more likely to smoke

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in the last year, e-cigarette use has tripled among middle and high school students, surpassing traditional cigarettes and every other tobacco product.

Packing a Healthy Lunch

Packing the kids’ lunches for school allows you to know which nutritious foods they are eating. Here are some budget-friendly, creative ideas to keep kids happy and healthy at lunchtime.

Creating Good Physical Activity Habits Early

The American Heart Association recommends that children and adolescents get at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous aerobic activity every day. But less than 30 percent of children meet that goal.

Dealing with Picky Eaters

Kids can be notoriously picky eaters. So how do you feed them healthy foods when all they want to eat is mac and cheese at every meal?

Keep Kids Away from E-Cigarettes

The makers of electronic cigarettes want the public to believe that e-cigarettes are a safe alternative to tobacco cigarettes. But they could contain chemicals and carcinogens that are harmful.

Is Fruit Juice Healthy for Kids?

An easy way to get kids to get more fruit in their diet is to throw one of those convenient fruit juice boxes into their lunch bag—or is it?

Helping Kids Get Physical Activity at Home

If your kids aren't part of a sports team that practices after school, how can you help them get the exercise they need? It's easier than you think.

Helping Kids Make Healthy Choices at School

Burgers, fries, hot dogs, mac and cheese - these school cafeteria favorites seem to always be on the menu. If you can't send your little ones off to school with a health homemade lunch, provide them with guidance on making healthy choices as they're moving through the lunch line.

Overweight Kids Face the Same Risks as Overweight Adults

In 2010, between 16 and 33% of children in the U.S. were obese - and indications are that they'll become obese adults. And like adults, obese children are prone to critical health risks.
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Departments

Heart News

Heart health news you can use about new scientific findings, public policy, programs and resources.

Heartfelt

Articles, poems and art submitted by heart disease survivors and their loved ones.

Life's Simple 7

Improving your health is as easy as minding seven simple health factors and behaviors. Tips and information to help you improve your health and enhance your quality of life.

Life Is Why

Everyone has a reason to live a longer, healthier life. These heart patients, their loved ones and others share their 'whys'. We'd love for you to share yours, too!

Simple Cooking

Cooking at home can be a daunting task, but a rewarding one for your diet and lifestyle (and your wallet). Making small changes in your diet is important to your heart health. Here are simple, healthy and affordable recipes and cooking tips.