Jeff was also kind enough to share his perspective of the American Heart Association's (AHA) recommendations for risk factors. It can be found in the comments section of this post: (https://www.facebook.com/JeffNovickRD/p ... omments=17
I hope that others find it at least as valuable as I do. Thank you again, Jeff.
[Original AHA Criteria: http://mylifecheck.heart.org/Multitab.a ... Code=en-US
(from: https://www.facebook.com/JeffNovickRD/p ... omments=17
"Here are the AHA 7 criteria. Let's start with those, which list their 3 levels of rating, poor, intermediate and ideal. I will add a 4th level called optimal, which should help.
In addition, I will list their 5 criteria for a healthy diet and make some additions to it. This would a very rough draft of what you are asking for and while not perfect, it would be a good start.
Poor Health = Current Smoke
Intermediate Health = Former smoker having quit within the last 12 months
Ideal Health = Never smoked or quit over 12 months ago
OPTIMAL= Never smoked or quite over 10 years ago.
2) BMI (Body Mass Index)
Poor Health = > 30
Intermediate Health = 25 - 29.9
Ideal Health = 18.5 - 24.9
OPTIMAL = 18.5 -22.5
3) Physical Activity
Poor Health = None
Intermediate Health = 30 - 150 minutes per week of moderate intense exercise
Ideal Health = 150 minutes per week or more of moderate intense exercise
OPTIMAL 150-300 minutes per week of moderate intensity exercise that includes "adequate amounts" of aerobic, resistance, "weight-bearing", flexibility, balance and some high intensity work.
4) Healthy Diet (See Below)
Poor Health = 0-1 components
Intermediate Health = 2-3 components
Ideal Health = 4-5 components
OPTIMAL (See below)
5) Total Cholesterol
Poor Health = > 240
Intermediate Health = 200-239
Ideal Health = < 200
OPTIMAL = < 150
6) Blood Pressure
Poor Health = > 140/90
Intermediate Health = 120-139/80-89
Ideal Health = < 120/80
7) Fasting Glucose
Poor Health = > 126
Intermediate Health = 100-125
Ideal Health = < 100
OPTIMAL = < 90
I would include also
LDL < 80
TG's < 150
Non HDL CHolesterol < 100
Waist Circumference less than 30 for women and over 35 for men. (Mostly applies to those with BMI's over 25)
I would probably add in Waist to Ht ratio of less than .45(ish) so your waist should be less than half of whatever your height is (in inches)
In order to properly evaluate our diet, here are the AHA's five components of a healthy diet. Again, I have added in some OPTIMAL comments.
1) 4.5 cups a day of fruits and vegetables
OPTIMAL The above is a minimum as 75-90% of our calories should come from unrefined unprocessed (or minimally processed) whole plant foods . To increase nutrient density, include several servings per day of green leafy vegetables.
2) Two or more 3.5 ounce (100 gm) servings per week of fish (preferably oily such as salmon or mackerel because these are high in omega-3 fatty acids). (NOTE: Vegetarians and vegans can meet this criterion through plant sources of essential fats.)
OPTIMAL = Ensure an adequate intake of essential fats from whole plant foods.
3) Less than 450 kcal a week of sugar-sweetened beverages (a 330 ml, 12 fl oz, can of coke is 139 kcal)
OPTIMAL=Added sugars/sweeteners in all forms (whether caloric, non caloric or artificial) should be eliminated or limited to no more than 5% of total calories. This is the equivalent of about 2 TB of most sugars/day.
4) Three or more servings per day of whole grains
OPTIMAL = Get your complex carbs from only unrefined unprocessed intact whole grains, starchy vegetables and legumes. These three foods should contribute the majority of your plant based calories per day. The rest will be made up of fruits, veggies and limited amounts of higher fat plant foods (nuts, seeds, avocados, peanuts, soy, etc). Refined processed foods, if included, should be no more than 5% of calories.
5) Less than 1,500 mg of sodium per day
OPTIMAL = Added sodium from all sources (salt, gourmet salt, soy sauce, etc) should be eliminated or limited to no more than 1200 mgs per day or less. (this is the equivalent of about 1/2 tsp/day)
Saturated Fat from all sources (plant or animal) should not be more than 7% of calories.
Trans fat, hydrogenated fats and interesterified fats should be eliminated.
Fiber. Fiber intake should be 30-50 grams/day from whole natural foods.
Eliminate dairy. Animal protein, if included, should be no more than 5% of total calories
Total Discretionary calories (added sugars/sweeteners, refined foods, oils, animal protein, etc, should be no more than 5-10% total).
Proper and adequate rest, relaxation, sleep, sunshine.
Overall calorie density of the diet should be no more than 500-800 calories per pound, depending on activity level. Nutrient density, while important, will automatically be covered when the above criteria are met.
Now remember, you would not have to hit them all, and some people may not be able to hit some of them, but the more you do, the better you will be based on risk factor analysis.
There you have it. A VERY ROUGH Form, but I will continue to work on this and come up with a comprehensive set of standards."