Hello My Friends
Welcome To The Vitality Project!
As a professional health coach concerned with the health and well-being of my clients it is my intention to improve your well-being and longevity by using the principles of nutrition, fitness, diet, lifestyle dynamics, and anti-aging medicine.
Recently the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association released several new guidelines regarding cholesterol management, obesity management, risk assessment and lifestyle intervention to reduce cardiovascular risk. The document was written by experts and was published in the Journal Circulation and the Journal of The American College of Cardiology.
According to the authors of this guideline, the purpose of the new guideline as to provide an update to what a healthy lifestyle is with the intention of preventing cardiovascular disease in at risk people. “The recommendations cover evidence related to dietary patterns, nutrient intake, and levels and types of physical activity that play a major role in cardiovascular disease prevention and treatment through effects on modifiable CVD risk factors, namely high LDL cholesterol and hypertension.”
The recommendations cover three major concepts.
- The consumption of a diet high in fruit, vegetables, fish, whole grains, lean poultry, nuts, legumes, low-fat dairy and non-tropical oils. A diet consistent with the Mediterranean-style diet.
- The consumption of trans fat, saturated fat, sugar, sugar-sweetened beverages and salt should be carefully restricted.
- Participate in 40 minutes of moderate to intense cardiovascular exercise 3-4 sessions per week.
The nutritional recommendations in this new document are different because they have endorsed the Mediterranean style of diet over the previous recommendation of a low-fat diet. This is an excellent step in recommending a type of diet that is backed by research and can prevent the onset of chronic disease. I also feel that the dietary restrictions are quite clear and helpful. I am especially pleased that reductions in sugar and sugar sweetened drinks are highly recommended in this report.
In my opinion, the recommendations regarding exercise do not go far enough and address a common issue relative to an aging population.
That is the issue of osteoporosis and sarcopenia.
In order to build stronger bones and reach peak bone mass, resistance exercise needs to be encouraged at a young age. This form of exercise is also extremely important in the prevention of osteoporosis later in life and it has been previously shown to prevent falls. Resistance exercise in the form of weight-training can also maintain muscle mass which has a tendency to disappear during the aging process placing those who experience it at greater risk of fractures and falls.
Sarcopenia is a condition of low muscle mass which can be completely prevented by the participation of a regular exercise program which stresses weight or resistance-training.
In my view, these new guidelines are a better version of the previous guidelines produced and maybe helpful in the prevention of cardiovascular disease in at-risk people.
However, they need to go even further if they are to reduce the burden of chronic disease and disability the population faces as they age.
Remember….your quality of life is the measurement of successful living regardless of your age.
Dr. Kevin. J. McLaughlin
Clinical Director: The Vitality Project