ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Using Music and Sports to Improve Kids' Asthma
Traffic, Dust Linked to Asthma in Kids
Combating Myths About Seasonal Allergies
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Ginger Can Ease Nausea From Chemotherapy Treatments
Should Your Child Be Seeing a Chiropractor?
Alternative Treatments May Boost IVF Success
ANIMAL CARE
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
Safe Toys for Dogs
BONES & JOINTS
Healthy adults have potential autoimmune disease-causing cells
Occupational Therapy Plus Exercise Benefits Osteoarthritis
Autumn Sees More Women With Bunion Problems
CANCER
Spice Compounds May Stem Tumor Growth
Drinking Green Tea May Slow Prostate Cancer
Get to Know the Pap Test
CAREGIVING
Many Alzheimer's Caregivers Admit to Abusive Behavior
Obese Children More Likely to Suffer Lower Body Injuries
UV Lights, Fans May Curb TB Spread in Hospitals
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Bad Marriages Harder on Women's Health
Support Network May Play Role in Benefits of Drinking
Secondhand Smoke Quickly Affects Blood Vessels
COSMETIC
Mouse Study Finds Molecule That Tells Hair to Grow
Get Sugared!.... Its a sweet choice for hair removal
What to Do If You Have Unsightly Veins
DENTAL, ORAL
Sports Drinks May Be Tough on Teeth
Amino Acid May Be Key to Strong Teeth
Most Insured Adults Worry About Health Care Costs: Poll
DIABETES
Red-Grape Compound May Improve Diabetes
Chamomile Tea May Ward Off Diabetes Damage
Coffee, Tea Might Stave Off Diabetes
DIET, NUTRITION
Natural Oils Help Lower Body Fat For Some
The 3LS Wellness Program for Reversing Chronic Symptoms and Creating Lasting Health
Weight Loss Might Not Curb Knee Arthritis
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Dementia Underestimated in Developing Countries
Disinfectants Can Boost Bacteria's Resistance to Treatment
Plastics Chemical Tied to Aggression in Young Girls
EYE CARE, VISION
Blood Sugar Control Helps Diabetics Preserve Sight
Eye Care Checkups Tied to Insurance Status
Contact Lens Cases Often Contaminated
FITNESS
Occupational Therapy Plus Exercise Benefits Osteoarthritis
Many Cancer Survivors Don't Adopt Healthy Lifestyle
Fliers Can Keep Blood Clots at Bay
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Intestinal Bacteria Trigger Immune Response
Peppermint Oil, Fiber Can Fight Irritable Bowel
Gum Chewing May Speed Colon Surgery Recovery
GENERAL HEALTH
Heal Your Life® Tips for Living Well
Have Fun This Summer, But DO Be Careful
Coffee Cuts Liver Scarring in Hepatitis C
HEAD & NECK
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
The Internet Is Becoming One-Stop Shopping for Health Help
Subway Defibrillators Save Lives
Save Your Aging Brain, Try Surfing The Web
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Fewer Heart Attacks After England Goes Smoke-Free
An Apple a Day May Help Keep Heart Disease Away
A Little Alcohol May Help the Heart: Studies
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Older Adults May Have Some Immunity to Swine Flu
Swine Flu Loves a Crowd
Poor Restroom Cleaning Causes Cruise-Ship Sickness
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Scary Toxins Make Halloween Face Paints Questionable
Exercise During Pregnancy Keeps Newborn Size Normal
Don't Leave Your Kids In The Car !
MEN'S HEALTH
Low Vitamin D Levels May Boost Men's Heart Attack Risk
Sunlight May Help Protect Men From Kidney Cancer
Lots of Sex May Prevent Erectile Dysfunction
MENTAL HEALTH
Vitamin C Protects Some Elderly Men From Bone Loss
A Little Alcohol May Stave Off Alzheimer's
Teen Internet Addicts More Likely to Self-Harm: Study
PAIN
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Before Conceiving, Take Folic Acid for One Full Year
Mom's Extra Pregnancy Pounds May Raise Child's Heart Risks
Acupuncture May Relieve Acid Indigestation In Pregnancy
SENIORS
Exercise Benefits Even the Oldest Old
Want Better Health in the New Year, Add Exercise to Your Day
Keeping Mentally Active Seems To Keep The Brain Active
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Sleeping Could Help Women Lose The Baby Fat
Moderate Aerobics May Ease Insomnia Symptoms
Better Sleep, Grades Seem to Go Up
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Occaisonal Dieting May Cut Breast Cancer, Study Says
Acupuncture May Ease Depression During Pregnancy
Acupuncture May Help Relieve Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
Add your Article

U.S. Diet Needs Heart-Felt Overhaul

TUESDAY, March 3 (HealthDay News) -- Every level of society must contribute to strategies meant to make it easier for people to eat a heart-healthy diet, according to the American Heart Association.

"Health problems caused by the U.S. diet extend past what people put on their plates to outside influences and trends in behavior that affect when, what and how much people eat. Multiple factors influence what Americans eat at every state of the life cycle," Dr. Samuel S. Gidding, director of pediatric cardiology at Nemours Cardiac Center of the Alfred I. Dupont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, Del., said in an AHA news release Monday.

Strategies to improve Americans' diets should be comprehensive and take into account individual tastes and behavior, family eating patterns, socioeconomic factors that limit food choices, ethnicity and literacy levels, the statement concluded.

The statement outlined specific steps that can be used to encourage good eating habits in families, schools, workplaces and communities. For example:

* Patients could be asked to measure their food consumption and then limit the use of sugar-containing beverages, reduce portion sizes, eat more meals as a family, and make time for physical activity.
* Rather than just specific diet counseling, doctors should support patient lifestyle changes and offer positive feedback for success in order to balance negative messages about unhealthy lifestyle-related risks.
* School nutrition standards need to be strengthened, and the food industry needs to reformulate products marketed to children. Efforts to push for healthier standards in schools require the involvement of parents and lawmakers at the local level.
* Longer-term and Web-based workplace interventions are better than one-time-only and printed literature in changing employees' eating habits. Employers should promote, and possibly subsidize, healthy food choices in on-site cafeterias, vending machines and at meetings.
* Food-labeling laws that require restaurants to post the calorie count of their menu items can help consumers make healthier meal choices.
* Governments can improve access to healthy foods for people with low incomes by offering increased funding for food stamp programs that can be used at farmers' markets, and by dealing with transportation issues that prevent access to healthy food.
* Also, governments could provide subsidies to encourage agricultural production of more whole-grain products, fruits and vegetables, trans fat-free oils, and low-fat dairy products.
* Encourage more research on ways to make healthy foods the preferred choice for consumers. Economic incentives may be one way to achieve this goal.

"The adverse trends in U.S. eating patterns must be reversed. Food choices are influenced on multiple social and environmental levels. With so many consumers eating away from home, we must make it easier to them to choose healthy food in every environment," Gidding said.

The heart association statement was published in the journal Circulation.

More information

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has more about eating for a healthy heart.



-- Robert Preidt



SOURCE: American Heart Association, news release, March 2, 2009

Last Updated: March 03, 2009

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