You don’t have to be heart disease’s most recent victim to need Prevent a Second Heart Attack: 8 Foods, 8 Weeks to Reverse Heart Disease, you simply have to refuse to be its next.
February has been a blissfully busy month. My wedding anniversary is this month – and, of course, Valentine’s Day also lands in the month of February. If you’re like our family, you celebrate all holidays in a big way. Go big or don’t go.
Another wonderful thing about this particular February is the number of OUTSTANDING books I’ve been sent to review. I’ve hit the jackpot this month – not only on this particular self help blog, but on my food blog as well.
One of the exciting books I’ve read for Self Help Daily is one that could actually be reviewed on the food blog OR the self help site.
Prevent a Second Heart Attack: 8 Foods, 8 Weeks to Reverse Heart Disease by Janet Bond Brill, PH.D., R.D., LDN is one of those books you just can’t put down. The information is spectacular, the advice golden, and the reading style flows effortlessly. The beauty of this book is that it takes information we’ve oftne heard and puts it within reach. The author doesn’t just tell the reader what he or she should do for better heart health, she tells us WHY it’s important and explains it in such a way that multiple light bulbs go off.
Talk about lighting the way.
Each year, roughly 1.5 million Americans have a heart attack. How staggering is that? Is it any wonder that so many people are seeking for heart health information? Heart disease currently has the upper hand. Something has to be done to get this ridiculous disease under control, not only for our generation but for our children and their children.
We can’t afford to let the number climb any higher.
Prevent a Second Heart Attack: 8 Foods, 8 Weeks to Reverse Heart Disease is written in a step by step style that I love. Each step and each tip is clearly laid out for the reader. The author makes such an impact on you that you find yourself motivated to take better care of your heart in all facets of your life.
I have never had a heart attack or heart disease. In fact, even my blood pressure and cholesterol are totally normal. However, if you’ve read Self Help Daily for any length of time, you know that I lost my mother nearly five years ago to heart disease. She was far, far too young to die and I am still far too young to not have a mom.
Heart disease doesn’t really care about details or emotions though. It’s cruel like that.
Even though I don’t have a personal history with heart disease, I have a personal grudge – and I’ll admit it, a personal fear. Whether you’ve been touched in any way by heart disease or not, you’ll want to read Prevent a Second Heart Attack: 8 Foods, 8 Weeks to Reverse Heart Disease.
As I said earlier, the book will affect your daily choices – I PROMISE you. Whether your own choices need to be cleaned up or those of a loved one have you concerned, this book may be the answer you’re looking for. Personally, I believe it is.
Here’s why I feel so strongly. Janet Bond Brill‘s research, statistics, and life-saving advice won’t just educate you, they’ll change the way you think.
Here’s a personal example. My typical weekday pretty much plays out like this:
After feeding all of my loved ones (the ones with skin, the ones with fur, and the ones with feathers), and pouring myself into a couple cups of coffee, I step into my home office and work online for a few hours. I take a mid-morning break to clean house – then it’s back to work. Around lunch, I go down the road to Kroger for any groceries I need for supper. In the past, I’d often just grab a burger, hot dog, chicken sandwich, or taco through a drive thru. I’d bring it home and eat my “treasure” while my cats napped nearby.
Then, it’d be back to work again.
However, yesterday, armed with the information from this particular book, I found myself completely turned off by the fast food prospects. I imagined what this food was doing inside my body once I granted it entrance. Instead, what I wanted… craved even… were dark greens, tomatoes, and steamed fish. With a clear purpose in mind, I went into Kroger and hit the produce department hard. Grapes, tomatoes, spinach, dark leaf lettuce, avocados, celery, and almonds.
I also bought a package of frozen tilapia to steam.
I came home and made the most beautiful salad you’ve ever seen and steamed the fish. I seasoned it up and had the best lunch I’ve had in a long time.
The book even affected my salad dressing selection. When I read the ingredients in my favorite dressings in the refrigerator (French and Ranch), I opted for a mixture of fresh lemon and lime juice and some cracked black pepper.
I finished my work online and made a point of taking a walk outside before making supper (salmon, squash, brown rice with almonds, and roasted asparagus).
In Prevent a Second Heart Attack, you’ll learn…
- The secret of the “numbers games” (cholesterol, blood pressure…). You’ll learn exactly why so much attention is paid to cholesterol and what you need to know to keep your cholesterol from becoming a problem.
- The difference between good carbs and bad carbs.
- Why oatmeal and popcorn lower bad cholesterol.
- Why everyone should adhere to the Mediterranean diet.
- Why fish is vital to heart health.
- The best exercise for a healthy heart.
- The most delicious everyday habit that’ll cut your risk of heart disease.
- A wonderful, very do-able two week eating plan.
- How to protect your cardiovascular health like never before!
A really special book will “stay” with you after you’ve read the last page. It’ll impact your decisions and change your life for the better. This is such a book and I strongly urge you to read it. What’s more, I hope you’ll read it, then pass it on to other members of your family. Explain to each that you don’t have to be a surviving victim of heart disease to benefit from this book – you just have to be someone who refuses to be its next victim.
Questions & Answers with the Author beneath the picture..
Q & A with Janet Bond Brill, Ph.D. R.D., LDN
Q: Why did you write the book Prevent a Second Heart Attack?
A: I saw a need among heart attack survivors that was not being filled. Currently, more than 13 million Americans have either survived a heart attack or been diagnosed with heart disease. As a registered dietitian specializing in cardiovascular disease prevention, I have found that heart attack survivors simply are not following a lifestyle plan that would help them to prevent a second attack. What many of these “survivors” need to know is that a healthy lifestyle and carefully following doctor’s orders can prevent another heart attack. The problem is that many of these individuals find the “cardiac diet” too restrictive or complicated, and some receive no lifestyle counseling. What’s more, if the heart attack survivor decides to go it alone and purchase a self-help book, he or she may reach for one of the best-selling heart disease reversal books that promote a punishing, “extreme” fringe diet. Most of these books feature Spartan, vegan-style eating plans that are simply too difficult to follow and frankly are just not livable. Why should heart attack survivors be punished further with the burden of tasteless, low-fat plans when there is a better way? My book gives these people good news – – that they can prevent new plaque buildup and even reverse or stabilize dangerous, vulnerable plaque in their coronary arteries with a delightfully palatable lifestyle strategy where they can still enjoy the good things in life.
Q: But what exactly are the best lifestyle changes – – alongside drugs – – for preventing a second heart attack and even reversing heart disease?
A: That is the very question this book answers. A tremendous amount of scientific research has investigated the application of various diet and exercise plans in preventing further coronary events. I have found that the bulk of the scientific evidence overwhelmingly supports the notion that post–heart attack patients should be advised to eat a Mediterranean-style diet, be physically active at least thirty minutes a day, and not smoke. In fact, the famed Lyon Heart Study that tested a Cretan Mediterranean diet in cardiac patients reported a phenomenal reduction of recurrence rate of 70 percent compared to the control diet (a typical low-fat Western-style diet). Thus, the bulk of the scientific research is crystal clear: a Mediterranean style of eating combined with physical activity is the optimal lifestyle plan for preventing a second heart attack and is far superior to the low-fat vegetarian diet regimens typically prescribed to heart patients in the fat-phobic ’90s (and that continue to line bookstore shelves today). I propose that a Mediterranean-style diet, as outlined in Prevent a Second Heart Attack and backed by powerful evidence, can be even more effective than the eating plans currently recommended by many cardiologists – – simply because it tastes good and makes life more enjoyable. Following vegan-style plans can also reverse heart disease but only if adhered to – – an extremely difficult chore for most Americans.
Q: Did you have a personal reason for writing this book?
A: All the men I love have either died of heart disease or are currently living with the disease. My father had his first heart attack at age forty-five and died from his second attack several years later. He was never given any lifestyle advice that could have helped him prevent or reverse his disease. My father-in-law, Harry, had his first heart attack at forty-eight years old and had his second bypass operation two years ago at age seventy-eight. He has tried many of the low-fat vegetarian diets over the years but has found them too difficult to adhere to on a consistent basis. My husband, Sam, had his first heart attack two years ago at age fifty-one. So I wrote this book with the hope that Sam, Harry, and the 13 million other American heart attack survivors will follow the advice set forth in these pages: a livable lifestyle that will show them the way to a long, happy, and healthy life by teaching them how to prevent that second lethal attack and even reverse the actual disease process.
Q: Hindsight is 20/20, but is there anything you would have suggested your husband, Sam, do to prevent his first heart attack?
A: Looking back, I would say I underestimated the power of three risk factors to promote a heart attack: severe emotional duress, family history, and a low HDL (“good”) cholesterol. Fearful that he would follow in his father’s and grandfather’s footsteps (his grandfather died of a heart attack at age thirty-five), Sam underwent an invasive medical test (an angiogram) at age forty-five to reassure him that he was free of his family scourge. The results came back negative for any trace of cardiovascular disease. His blood values were excellent except for a low HDL value of 32 (under 40 mg/dL is considered a risk factor). He didn’t smoke, had normal blood pressure, and was not overweight. He continued under the care of his cardiologist – – and had passed his exercise stress tests with flying colors. Then came the economic tsunami that hit the Florida real estate market (my husband is a general contractor) . . . combined with the stress of his father’s second bypass operation . . . and he had a heart attack on July 31, 2009 – – and thankfully survived with minor heart muscle damage. So obviously, looking back, he should have been taking much more aggressive preventive measures given his family history – – such as medications, HDL-boosting lifestyle measures, and practicing more stress management techniques.
Q: Is heart disease really reversible?
A: Yes. Studies published in leading medical journals have shown that following a lifestyle similar to the one outlined in my book – – and combined with physician-prescribed medications – – can stabilize and even reverse vulnerable plaque.
Q: Can I eat red meat?
A: The Prevent a Second Heart Attack plan consists of removing the plaque- building foods (red meat, cream, butter, eggs, and cheese) that cause blood vessel damage and replacing them with delicious anti-inflammatory foods that facilitate the body’s natural healing processes to reverse existing heart disease and restore quality of life. To combat the confusion issue, the Prevent a Second Heart Attack Plan offers powerful lifesaving advice, translating the complex clinical findings into a simple, easy-to-follow set of guidelines, “The Eight Dietary Commandments”: (1) no more butter and cream, to be replaced by extra virgin olive oil; (2) no day without greens and other vegetables; (3) no day without figs or other fruit; (4 & 5) no meat (beef, lamb, pork), and replaced by fish and legumes; (6) no day without walnuts and flaxseeds; (7) no day without whole grains and cereals; (8) and moderate alcohol consumption, mainly in the form of red wine, recommended at dinner. (Plus a bonus food – – deep, dark, sinfully rich chocolate!)
Q: What is the best exercise for my heart?
A: The scientific consensus is that walking is the best exercise prescription for fighting off heart disease. How much, how often, and how fast (plus a discussion of the latest scientific research on exercise for heart disease) is detailed in the chapter on exercise. The best medicine for healing the arteries and reversing heart disease is moderate exercise, and the best exercise for you is the one you will do on a daily basis!
Q: What makes your plan so different and easier to follow than some of the other heart disease reversal plans on the market?
A: Many of the best-selling plans advise avoiding fish; any and all kinds of oil; avocado; nuts; seeds, and chocolate–delightfully tasty foods–all advocated in my plan.
Q: Can I really begin to heal my arteries in just 8 weeks?
A: Clinical research has shown a significant reduction in the rate of secondary events in post-heart attack subjects switching to a Mediterranean-style diet–in as little as 6 weeks.
Q: What about protein–where do I get my protein from?
A: The Prevent a Second heart Attack plan urges you to become a “vegaquarium.” By getting your protein from the earth and the sea, you will also be fueling your body with numerous additional nutrients that fortify your daily heart disease defense system–artery healing components not found in a Western-style diet high in animal protein.
Q: Can I drink coffee and tea?
A: The Prevent a Second heart Attack plan is a plant-based diet. Both coffee and tea are made from plants–and plants contain plaque-fighting phytonutrients. So yes, you can have coffee and tea.
Q: What about supplements?
A: Not all supplements are created equally when it comes to treating and reversing plaque buildup. Three stand out among the crowd and should be in every heart attack survivor’s medicine chest: Niacin; Vitamin D3; Fish oil.
Janet Bond Brill, Ph.D., R.D., LDN, author of Prevent a Second Heart Attack: 8 Foods, 8 Weeks to Reverse Heart Disease, is a diet, nutrition, and fitness expert who has appeared on national television. She is the author of Cholesterol Down: 10 Simple Steps to Lower Your Cholesterol In 4 Weeks Without Prescription Drugs, and specializes in cardiovascular disease prevention. Dr. Brill lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and three children.
Refuse to be heart disease’s next victim. Whether you’ve had a heart attack before or not, this is a very, very, very important book and one you should buy, read cover to cover, and incorporate into your life. If you have a history of heart disease in your family, you have even more incentive to invite author Janet Bond Brill into your life. Please buy a copy for yourself and, certainly, one for anyone in your life who has been touched by heart disease: Prevent a Second Heart Attack: 8 Foods, 8 Weeks to Reverse Heart Disease