Dr. Joseph Rucker
Abd Khatib, MD





Simple 7 to a Healthier Heart

Abd Khatib, MD
Eau Claire Heart Institute
Eau Claire

To have a healthier heart, all you need is a desire to live better and a plan to stick to, and you can reach your goal. The following seven steps will help you live a healthier lifestyle.

1. Stop Smoking - Both smoking and inhaling second-hand smoke, or the use of other tobacco products increases your risk of heart disease and hardening of the arteries, also known as atherosclerosis.

What does 100 calories look like?2. Maintain a Healthy Weight - If you are overweight, you have a higher risk of health problems in general. To determine the amount of body fat in most people, we use the body mass index (BMI). A normal BMI ranges from 18.5 to 24.9. Underweight is defined as a BMI less than 18.5, overweight as a BMI from 25 to 29.9, and obesity as a BMI of 30 or greater.

A simple way to calculate your BMI is to multiply your weight in pounds by 703 and divide the result by your height in inches and then divide again by your height in inches. For example, if you weigh 160 lbs. and are 67 inches tall:

BMI = 160 lbs x 703 = 112,480
112,480 ÷ 67 = 1678.8
1678.8 ÷ 67 = 25.056 (overweight)

 To lose weight you have to calculate the number of calories you burn and be sure to burn more than you eat. To estimate how many calories you need to eat, you can use the following formula:

  • Multiply your current weight in pounds by 10 for the number of base calories.
  • Depending on your level of activity (3-low level / 8-very active) multiply your current weight by 3 to 8. This will give you the activity calories.
  • Add the two, the base calories and activity calories, together to approximate the number of calories you need to maintain your current weight.
160 lbs x 10 = 1,600 (base calories)
160 lbs x 3 = 480 (activity calories)
2,080 (calories to maintain weight)

If you eat 500 fewer calories per day you will lose one pound per week. If you eat 1,000 fewer calories per day, you will lose two pounds per week.

3. Get Active - Exercising for at least 150 minutes (2 hours) per week of moderate intensity, aerobic physical activity (for example brisk walking) or for 75 minutes per week of vigorous intensity, aerobic physical activity, or a combination, is recommended. The benefits of exercise include improved lipids, lower blood pressure, increased insulin sensitivity (better control of diabetes and blood sugar) and decreased inflammation and blood viscosity (thickness of blood).

The cutoff point above which there was a marked benefit in prognosis with exercise was 3.7 METs for women and 4.3 METs in men. One MET is defined as one kilocalorie/kilogram/hour and is roughly equivalent to the energy cost of sitting quietly. (A body at rest uses 1 MET). Avoid unaccustomed and vigorous physical activity. Vigorous physical activity (more than 6 METs), in people with known or unknown coronary artery disease, appears to be associated with a greater incidence of sudden cardiac death or heart attack. Be sure to consult your physician for an exercise prescription or program before starting.

4. Eat Better - A balanced diet with 4-5 cups of fruits and vegetables per day, two servings of fish per week, high fiber, low salt, and low in sugar-sweetened beverages is recommended.

5. Control Cholesterol - Keep your total cholesterol under 200 mg/dL. Dietary consumption should be less than 300 mg of dietary cholesterol each day. Check your blood cholesterol levels at least once every five years–levels above 240 mg is too high; consult your doctor for further measures.

6. Manage Blood Pressure - You have high blood pressure if you have a blood pressure of 140/90 mmHg or higher on several occasions. Consult your doctor.

7. Control Blood Sugar - A healthy, non-diabetic adult should have a fasting blood sugar reading of less than 100 mg/dL.

Warning Signs of A Heart Attack

  • Chest discomfort of more than a few minutes or chest discomfort that goes away and comes back. Pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.
  • Discomfort in other areas of the upper body. Pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • Breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or light-headedness.

Dr. Abd Khatib – Eau Claire Heart Institute
For information or to schedule an appointment:
715-831-4444 | www.echeart.com
Dr. Khatib sees patients in Eau Claire.