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It's World Heart Day! Learn the secrets to a healthy heart from our physicians at Orlando Health

September 09, 2013

In honor of World Heart Day, we asked some of our cardiac physicians what piece of advice they would give to patients and families to help keep their heart healthy. Here's what they said:

"As a pediatric physician, my advice to kids is: have fun! Play a sport for 1-2 hours almost every day. Eat responsibly. Your body just doesn't function well on sugar, starch and fat. And don't smoke because, plain and simply, it's deadly. A healthy heart means a long, healthy life, starting now!" — Dr. William DeCampli, Co-Director of The Heart Center at Arnold Palmer Hospital

"The secret to a healthy heart is to eat healthy, exercise regularly, avoid stress when possible, take your medications every day, and laugh as often as you can." — Dr. Mark Steiner, Co-Medical Director at the Orlando Health Heart Institute

"An individual should know their cardiac risk factors and how these can be effectively modified. Factors include: blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar levels, and tobacco use. Obesity and lack of activity directly affects these risk factors. The largest challenge is that in our society, many of us avoid physical activity, and we are encouraged to over consume foods that have a high caloric content and low nutritional value." — Dr. Salvador Lanza, cardiologist at Mid-Florida Cardiology Specialists

"Daily exercise, a well-balanced, low-fat diet, and enjoying quality time with your loved ones." — Dr. Deepak Vivek, cardiologist at Orlando Heart Center

"A key to a happy heart is being thankful and surrounding yourself with positive thoughts, images, and people, as much as possible. Every day, I wake up and name at least two things I'm thankful for before I get out of bed. Instead of turning the news on in the morning, I listen to my favorite positive music. Starting the day on a positive note allows me the frame of mind to encounter problems and difficulties throughout the day." — Debra Shaw, MSN, RN, PCCN, heart valve coordinator at the Orlando Health Heart Institute.

"It's no secret. Maintain an ideal body weight, exercise regularly, don't smoke, treat high blood pressure, diabetes and elevated cholesterol, and hope that you picked the right parents! Although genetics play a significant role in the development of heart disease, most of the disease I see each day in my office is clearly preventable with appropriate lifestyle changes and compliance with medication." — Dr. Linda Jaffe, cardiologist at the Orlando Heart Center

We challenge you to pick one piece of advice from our physicians and implement it into your daily routine to help keep your heart healthy!

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