Iowa Specialty Hospital

Tips from Cardiac Rehab

February 11, 2019

Medication Monday
by Christopher Medvec PharmD, MBA
1) Beta Blockers such as metoprolol, carvedilol, and other heart medications ending in ‘lol’ should be taken with food.  Food increases the absorption of these medications making them work better.
2) Cholesterol Medications such as simvastatin, atorvastatin, and other medications ending in ‘statin’ should be taken at bedtime.  Your body creates cholesterol when you sleep so taking this medication before bedtime will help to decrease your cholesterol levels.
3) If you are prescribed nitroglycerin sublingual tablets, make sure to sit down when you take them.  They will decrease your blood pressure and may make you dizzy.  They work by expanding your blood vessels so blood can get to your heart.  Remember you can place one tablet under your tongue every 5 minutes for up to 3 doses.  Call 911 as soon as possible as you have better odds of survival. Please keep the tablets in the original glass bottle and unopened as this will ensure the medication to work properly. Once opened the prescription bottle expires in 6 months regardless of the bottle’s expiration date.

Tasty Tuesday
Annette Snyder, MS, RD, CSOWM, LD
Fiber can help satisfy hunger, as well as help with cholesterol control.  There are different types of fiber: soluble and insoluble.
Soluble is the ‘cholesterol hunter’ and can be found in oats (oatmeal, Cheerios®), pears, apples, avocado, beans (like lima beans or black beans), sweet potatoes, and much more!
Add a quick, easy source of soluble fiber to your diet (along with some heart-healthy fats) with a trail mix!  Make your own—don’t buy it—as you can control what’s added.
For 1 cup trail mix (3-4 servings—a little goes a long way):
½ cup dry Cheerios®
¼ cup almonds, dry roasted peanuts, pecans (your choice)
¼ cup dried apples
Mix together, and split into re-sealable snack-size Ziploc bags for an on-the-go treat!

Wellness Wednesday
by Dr. McLoughlin 
“Lowering sodium (salt) in the diet is an important way to help control blood pressure. Much of the salt we eat comes from processed foods rather than the salt shaker, so eating fresh foods is a great way to improve the diet.”

Thoughtful Thursday
by Rachel Fletcher, LISW
If you are feeling overwhelmed, stop, take a breath and do this exercise. Look around you and identify 5 things you can see, 4 things you can feel, 3 things you can hear, 2 things you can smell and 1 thing you can taste. 

7-11 and 11-7 breaths
If you need to lower your energy, you are feeling overwhelmed or anxious, try breathing in for a count of 7 and breathe out for a count of 11. Repeat for a few breaths. This will help lower your overall arousal and help you relax.
If you need to raise your energy, try breathing in for a count of 11 and out for a count of 7, and repeat. This will help raiser your energy and awareness somewhat.

Fitness Friday
by Kristen Pedersen BSN, RN & Emily Weets BSN, RN 
Aim for 150 minutes (2.5 hours) moderate intensity aerobic exercise per Week
    -examples of moderate intensity:  brisk walking, dancing, gardening, biking
To help reduce cholesterol and B/P numbers increase to 40 minutes moderate-vigorous activity 3-4 days/week
-examples of vigorous activity: hiking uphill, swimming laps, heavy yardwork, jumping rope
Simplest way to get started; walking! Something is Always better than nothing!
Help yourself sleep better, reduce stress/anxiety, and the risk of developing chronic diseases, as well as, improve overall sense of well-being by moving more today! 

« Back

© 2023 Iowa Specialty Hospital. All rights reserved.