What is PulsePoint?

PulsePoint is a mobile phone application that allows users to view and receive alerts on calls being responded to by fire departments. The app’s main feature, and where its name comes from, is that it sends fire department alerts to users at the same time that dispatchers are sending the call to emergency crews. The goal is to increase the possibility that a victim in cardiac arrest will receive cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) quickly. The app uses the current location of a user and will alert them if someone in their vicinity is in need of CPR. The app, which interfaces with a fire departments dispatch center, will send notifications to users only if the victim is in a public place and only to users that are in the immediate vicinity of the emergency.Based in the San Francisco Bay Area PulsePoint is run by a non-profit foundation of the same name.

here to learn more about PulsePoint

Want to see a quick video on PulsePoint? Click here.

Cardiac Arrest can happen to the healthiest of people

Cardiac arrest can happen to whom we think are the healthiest of people. But we have to remember cardiac arrest does not discriminate on who it effects. When we think of someone who will or has suffered from cardiac arrest, we think of the visual things. From being overweight and out of shape to someone who takes many different heart medications or someone who smokes and someone who is a very stressful. Who we don’t think about is that person who eats healthy or appears to be in great shape and takes care of their body while living a happy and healthy life as someone who will suffer from cardiac arrest. While someone who appears to be in great shape on the outside may have some very dangerous problems going on inside. Whether its from congenital heart problems or heredity conditions those are keys reasons a healthy person can suffer from sudden cardiac arrest. Some conditions are cardiac amyloidosis, cardiac myxoma, familial dilated cardiomyopathy and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

In the case of the Biggest Loser trainer Bob Harper, having a high level of particles in his blood known as lipoprotein is what caused him to go into cardiac arrest. Lipoprotein(a), is a particle in your blood which carries cholesterol, fats and proteins. The amount your body makes is inherited from one or both parents and is determined by the genes passed on from your parent(s) when you are born.  It does not change very much during your lifetime except if you are a women, levels increase as the natural estrogen level declines with menopause.  Diet and exercise seems to have little to no impact on the lipoprotein(a) level.

There are many things that can help prevent cardiac arrest but then there are some things you cannot change. The important things are to be able to recognize what the signs and symptoms of a heart attack are and know what to do when someone suffers cardiac arrest. Below is a link to People Magazine. Bob Harper talks briefly about his experience in suffering cardiac arrest and the minor symptom that started the chain to his sudden cardiac arrest. If you have a family history of hereditary heart conditions it is important to get tested and to stay in close contact with your primary care physician regarding annual tests and treatment. It’s better to be aware and prepared about conditions then it is to be surprised and react to cardiac arrest.

Bob Harper Regrets Overlooking Heart Attack Warning Signs: ‘I Kick Myself Over and Over Again’

Future posts will go over signs and symptoms of cardiac related chest pain.

Having a Healthy Diet equates to a Healthy Heart

Preventing Heart Disease through a Healthy Diet

Although you might know that eating certain foods can increase your heart disease risk, it’s often tough to change your eating habits. Whether you have years of unhealthy eating under your belt or you simply want to fine-tune your diet so here are eight heart-healthy diet tips. Once you know which foods to eat more of and which foods to limit, you’ll be on your way toward a heart-healthy diet.

The Mayo Clinic Mayo Clinic is a nonprofit medical practice and research group based in Rochester, Minnesota. It employs more than 4,500 physicians and scientists and 57,100 allied health staff. The practice specializes in treating difficult cases through tertiary care. It spends over $660 million a year on research. Here is what they recommend to for a health heart.

1. Control your portion size

How much you eat is just as important as what you eat. Overloading your plate, taking seconds and eating until you feel stuffed can lead to eating more calories than you should. Portions served in restaurants are often more than anyone needs.
Use a small plate or bowl to help control your portions. Eat larger portions of low-calorie, nutrient-rich foods, such as fruits and vegetables, and smaller portions of high-calorie, high-sodium foods, such as refined, processed or fast foods. This strategy can shape up your diet as well as your heart and waistline.

Keep track of the number of servings you eat. A serving size is a specific amount of food, defined by common measurements such as cups, ounces or pieces. For example, one serving of pasta is 1/2 cup, or about the size of a hockey puck. A serving of meat, fish or chicken is about 2 to 3 ounces, or about the size and thickness of a deck of cards. Judging serving size is a learned skill. You may need to use measuring cups and spoons or a scale until you’re comfortable with your judgment.

2. Eat more vegetables and fruits

Vegetables and fruits are good sources of vitamins and minerals. Vegetables and fruits are also low in calories and rich in dietary fiber. Vegetables and fruits contain substances found in plants that may help prevent cardiovascular disease. Eating more fruits and vegetables may help you eat less high-fat foods, such as meat, cheese and snack foods.

Featuring vegetables and fruits in your diet can be easy. Keep vegetables washed and cut in your refrigerator for quick snacks. Keep fruit in a bowl in your kitchen so that you’ll remember to eat it. Choose recipes that have vegetables or fruits as the main ingredients, such as vegetable stir-fry or fresh fruit mixed into salads.

Fruits and vegetables to choose
¥ Fresh or frozen vegetables and fruits
¥ Low-sodium canned vegetables
¥ Canned fruit packed in juice or water

Fruits and vegetables to limit
¥ Coconut
¥ Vegetables with creamy sauces
¥ Fried or breaded vegetables
¥ Canned fruit packed in heavy syrup
¥ Frozen fruit with sugar added

3. Select whole grains

Whole grains are good sources of fiber and other nutrients that play a role in regulating blood pressure and heart health. You can increase the amount of whole grains in a heart-healthy diet by making simple substitutions for refined grain products. Or be adventuresome and try a new whole grain, such as whole-grain farro, quinoa or barley.

Grain products to choose
¥ Whole-wheat flour
¥ Whole-grain bread, preferably 100% whole-wheat bread or 100% whole-grain bread
¥ High-fiber cereal with 5 g or more of fiber in a serving
¥ Whole grains such as brown rice, barley and buckwheat (kasha)
¥ Whole-grain pasta
¥ Oatmeal (steel-cut or regular)

Grain products to limit or avoid
¥ White, refined flour
¥ White bread
¥ Muffins
¥ Frozen waffles
¥ Corn bread
¥ Doughnuts
¥ Biscuits
¥ Quick breads
¥ Cakes
¥ Pies
¥ Egg noodles
¥ Buttered popcorn
¥ High-fat snack crackers

4. Limit unhealthy fats

Limiting how much saturated and trans fats you eat is an important step to reduce your blood cholesterol and lower your risk of coronary artery disease. A high blood cholesterol level can lead to a buildup of plaques in your arteries, called atherosclerosis, which can increase your risk of heart attack and stroke.

The American Heart Association offers these guidelines for how much fat to include in a heart-healthy diet:

Type of fat Recommendation
Saturated fat
Less than 7% of your total daily calories, or less than 14 g of saturated fat if you follow a 2,000-calorie-a-day diet

Trans fat
Less than 1% of your total daily calories, or less than 2 g of trans fat if you follow a 2,000-calorie-a-day diet

The best way to reduce saturated and trans fats in your diet is to limit the amount of solid fats — butter, margarine and shortening — you add to food when cooking and serving. You can also reduce the amount of saturated fat in your diet by trimming fat off your meat or choosing lean meats with less than 10 percent fat.
You can also use low-fat substitutions when possible for a heart-healthy diet. For example, top your baked potato with low-sodium salsa or low-fat yogurt rather than butter, or use sliced whole fruit or low-sugar fruit spread on your toast instead of margarine.
You may also want to check the food labels of some cookies, crackers and chips. Many of these snacks — even those labeled “reduced fat” — may be made with oils containing trans fats. One clue that a food has some trans fat in it is the phrase “partially hydrogenated” in the ingredient list.
When you do use fats, choose monounsaturated fats, such as olive oil or canola oil. Polyunsaturated fats, found in certain fish, avocados, nuts and seeds, also are good choices for a heart-healthy diet. When used in place of saturated fat, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats may help lower your total blood cholesterol. But moderation is essential. All types of fat are high in calories.

Fats to choose
¥ Olive oil
¥ Canola oil
¥ Vegetable and nut oils
¥ Margarine, trans fat free
¥ Cholesterol-lowering margarine, such as Benecol, Promise Activ or Smart Balance
¥ Nuts, seeds
¥ Avocados

Fats to limit
¥ Butter
¥ Lard
¥ Bacon fat
¥ Gravy
¥ Cream sauce
¥ Nondairy creamers
¥ Hydrogenated margarine and shortening
¥ Cocoa butter, found in chocolate
¥ Coconut, palm, cottonseed and palm-kernel oils

5. Choose low-fat protein sources

Lean meat, poultry and fish, low-fat dairy products, and eggs are some of your best sources of protein. But be careful to choose lower fat options, such as skim milk rather than whole milk and skinless chicken breasts rather than fried chicken patties.
Fish is another good alternative to high-fat meats. And certain types of fish are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which can lower blood fats called triglycerides. You’ll find the highest amounts of omega-3 fatty acids in cold-water fish, such as salmon, mackerel and herring. Other sources are flaxseed, walnuts, soybeans and canola oil.

Legumes — beans, peas and lentils — also are good sources of protein and contain less fat and no cholesterol, making them good substitutes for meat. Substituting plant protein for animal protein — for example, a soy or bean burger for a hamburger — will reduce your fat and cholesterol intake.

Proteins to choose
¥ Low-fat dairy products such as skim or low-fat (1%) milk, yogurt and cheese
¥ Eggs
¥ Fish, especially fatty, cold-water fish, such as salmon
¥ Skinless poultry
¥ Legumes
¥ Soybeans and soy products, such as soy burgers and tofu
¥ Lean ground meats

Proteins to limit or avoid
¥ Full-fat milk and other dairy products
¥ Organ meats, such as liver
¥ Fatty and marbled meats
¥ Spareribs
¥ Hot dogs and sausages
¥ Bacon
¥ Fried or breaded meats

6. Reduce the sodium in your food

Eating a lot of sodium can contribute to high blood pressure, a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Reducing sodium is an important part of a heart-healthy diet.

The Department of Health and Human Services recommends:
¥ Healthy adults have no more than 2,300 milligrams (mg) of sodium a day (about a teaspoon of salt)
¥ People age 51 or older, African-Americans, and people who have been diagnosed with high blood pressure, diabetes or chronic kidney disease have no more than 1,500 mg of sodium a day

Although reducing the amount of salt you add to food at the table or while cooking is a good first step, much of the salt you eat comes from canned or processed foods, such as soups and frozen dinners. Eating fresh foods and making your own soups and stews can reduce the amount of salt you eat.
If you like the convenience of canned soups and prepared meals, look for ones with reduced sodium. Be wary of foods that claim to be lower in sodium because they are seasoned with sea salt instead of regular table salt — sea salt has the same nutritional value as regular salt.
Another way to reduce the amount of salt you eat is to choose your condiments carefully. Many condiments are available in reduced-sodium versions, and salt substitutes can add flavor to your food with less sodium.

Low-salt items to choose
¥ Herbs and spices
¥ Salt substitutes
¥ Reduced-salt canned soups or prepared meals
¥ Reduced-salt versions of condiments, such as reduced-salt soy sauce
and reduced-salt ketchup

High-salt items to avoid
¥ Table salt
¥ Canned soups and prepared foods, such as frozen dinners
¥ Tomato juice
¥ Soy sauce

7. Plan ahead: Create daily menus

You know what foods to feature in your heart-healthy diet and which ones to limit. Now it’s time to put your plans into action.
Create daily menus using the six strategies listed above. When selecting foods for each meal and snack, emphasize vegetables, fruits and whole grains. Choose lean protein sources and healthy fats, and limit salty foods. Watch your portion sizes and add variety to your menu choices.

8. Allow yourself an occasional treat

Allow yourself an indulgence every now and then. A candy bar or handful of potato chips won’t derail your heart-healthy diet. But don’t let it turn into an excuse for giving up on your healthy-eating plan. If overindulgence is the exception, rather than the rule, you’ll therefore balance things out over the long term. What’s important is that you eat healthy foods most of the time.

In conclusion a healthy diet and lifestyle are your best weapons to fight cardiovascular disease. It’s not as hard as you may think!  Remember, it’s the overall pattern of your choices that counts. Incorporate these eight tips into your life, and you’ll find that heart-healthy eating is both doable and enjoyable. With planning and a few simple substitutions, you can eat with your heart in mind.

Why I should Quit Smoking?

Smoking is the most preventable cause of premature death in the United States. Smokers have a higher risk of developing many chronic disorders, including atherosclerosis — the buildup of fatty substances in the arteries — which can lead to coronary heart disease and stroke. Controlling or reversing atherosclerosis is an important part of preventing future heart attack or stroke.

You can modify or control seven major independent risk factors for coronary heart disease:

1.Cigarette and tobacco smoke

2.High blood cholesterol

3.High blood pressure

4.Physical inactivity

5.Overweight or obesity

6.Diabetes

7.Healthy Diet

For the case of this blog we will concentrate on the number one factor. Cigarette and Tobacco smoke.

Smoking by itself increases the risk of coronary heart disease.

When it acts with the other factors, it greatly increases your risk from those factors, too. Smoking decreases your tolerance for physical activity and increases the tendency for blood to clot. It decreases HDL (good) cholesterol. Your risks increase greatly if you smoke and have a family history of heart disease. Smoking also creates a higher risk for peripheral artery disease and aortic aneurysm. It increases the risk of recurrent coronary heart disease after bypass surgery, too.

Smoking is also an important risk factor for stroke. Inhaling cigarette smoke produces several effects that damage the cerebrovascular system. Women who take oral contraceptives and smoke increase their risk of stroke many times. Cigars and pipes aren’t a “safer” alternative to cigarettes. People who smoke cigars or pipes also have a higher risk of cardiovascular disease and death than non-smokers.

Breathe clean air.

It’s also important to avoid other people’s smoke. The link between secondhand smoke (also called environmental tobacco smoke) and disease is well known, and the connection to cardiovascular-related disability and death is also clear. Each year about 34,000 adults die from heart and blood vessel disease caused by other people’s smoke. The risk of stroke for nonsmokers who are exposed to secondhand smoke is increased by an estimated 20–30 percent.

Let healing begin today.

If you already have heart disease, you may think, “What good will it do me to quit smoking now?” But don’t be discouraged. Your lungs can begin to heal themselves as soon as you stop harming them with more smoke. Heart disease can be prevented and controlled, but you must follow your treatment plan — and quitting smoking is a big part.

Gilroy’s Good Samaritans Save Man’s Life

You never know where you’ll be when the time comes to help someone. You could be at home in the garage, at the store or at the local gym when you here some scream for help or witness a tragic event. Are you prepared to help that stranger? What is going on or why do they need help are some questions that may run threw your head. What if someone was screaming help because the person they are with suddenly collapsed, would you know what to do? Joel Goldsmith and Teri Neigh knew exactly what to do when Joe Lomelis heart stopped and he collapsed at the gym. Having learned CPR and how to use an AED these two good samaritans saved Joe’s life.

Good Samaritans Save a Life

What is an AED (automated external defibrillator)?

An automated external debrillator (AED) is a lightweight, portable device that delivers an electric shock through the chest to the heart. The shock can stop an irregular heart rhythm and allow a normal rhythm to resume following sudden cardiac arrest. Sudden cardiac arrest is an abrupt loss of heart function. If it’s not treated within minute it will quickly lead to death. Most sudden cardiac arrests result from ventricular debrillation. This is a rapid and unsynchronized heart rhythm starting in the heart’s lower pumping chambers (the ventricles). The heart must be “debrillated” quickly, because a victim’s chance of surviving drops by seven to 10 percent for every minute a normal heartbeat isn’t restored.

To learn more about an AED is (click here)

What is PulsePoint?

PulsePoint is a mobile phone application that allows users to view and receive alerts on calls being responded to by fire departments. The app’s main feature, and where its name comes from, is that it sends fire department alerts to users at the same time that dispatchers are sending the call to emergency crews. The goal is to increase the possibility that a victim in cardiac arrest will receive cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) quickly. The app uses the current location of a user and will alert them if someone in their vicinity is in need of CPR. The app, which interfaces with a fire departments dispatch center, will send notifications to users only if the victim is in a public place and only to users that are in the immediate vicinity of the emergency.Based in the San Francisco Bay Area PulsePoint is run by a non-profit foundation of the same name.

Click here to learn more about PulsePoint

Want to see a quick video on PulsePoint? Click here.