Health and Nutrition


The Road to Good Health Starts Here

Thank you for your involving us in the evaluation and care of your cardiovascular health. We are dedicated to providing you with tools for improved health and education on heart-healthy nutrition.

Good health tools 

Assessing your risks for heart disease

Are you aware of your risks for cardiovascular disease?  And, are you making healthy daily choices to lower your risk and follow a heart healthy lifestyle?  According to the American Heart Association, over 80% of all cardiovascular disease can be prevented if one is aware of his/her risk factors and makes choices to lead a heart healthy lifestyle by keeping risk factors in healthy ranges.  Risk factors identified by the American Heart Association are:

Major risk factors that cannot be changed: 

  • Increasing age

  • Male sex

  • Heredity, including race

Major Risk Factors that can be changed:

  • Cigarette smoking
  • Blood cholesterol levels
  • Blood pressure
  • Physical inactivity
  • Obesity and overweight
  • Diabetes mellitus
To keep your risk factors in healthy ranges, be sure to:
  • Get your blood pressure checked regularly and keep pressure below 120/80 mm Hg

  • Don’t smoke cigarettes or use any other tobacco products 

  • Get at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity  or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity activity each week

  • Maintain a healthy weight keeping your Body Mass Index less than 25

  • Eat a nutritious diet that follows the American Heart Association recommendations

  • Keep cholesterol levels in normal ranges (Total cholesterol, LDL and HDL cholesterol and Triglycerides)

  • Keep fasting blood glucose less than 100 mg/dL

To learn how your specific risk factors stack up, go to the American Heart Association website at and take the Heart Attack Risk Calculator assessment to determine your risks for heart attack or heart disease. 

Keep the beat going strong! Learn your risks today and take action to follow a heart healthy lifestyle!

Active Moving

Parkview Physicians Group - Cardiology is committed to educating and motivating our patients and community to pursue an active lifestyle. These resources will assist you in finding great area locations for walking or active movement.

Heart healthy websites:

    American Heart Association (AHA) site is packed with heart information.

    AHA website is designed for assessing your personal heart score.            

    American College of Cardiology site gives patient education offerings.

    AHA website offers tailored heart messages focused for women.

    Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics offers helps for all dietary needs.

    Cooking Light offers healthy recipes with lower fat and sodium content.

    WomenHeart features valuable online tools and resources that can help women to live a heart healthy life. 

Heart conditions

Angina:  Angina is chest pain or discomfort due to coronary heart disease. It occurs when the heart muscle doesn’t get as much blood as it needs, which usually happens because one or more of the heart’s arteries is narrowed or blocked.

Arrhythmia:  An abnormal heart rhythm that, when severe or long-lasting, can prevent the heart from pumping enough blood to the body. Damage to the heart muscle from a heart attack can make someone prone to arrhythmias, as can some congenital heart conditions. A variety of minerals, such as potassium, magnesium and calcium, with high or low concentrations in the blood and tissue can cause arrhythmias. So can alcohol, cigarettes and recreational drugs.

Atrial Fibrillation:  Atrial Fibrillation (AF of Afib) is a disorder of heart rate and rhythm, which occurs when the heart’s two small, upper chambers quiver rapidly and empty blood into the heart’s lower chambers in a haphazard manner instead of beating effectively. A dangerous condition can arise because blood that isn’t pumped completely out of the upper chambers when the heart beats may pool and clot. Then, if a piece of a clot enters the bloodstream, it may lodge in the brain causing a stroke. Causes of atrial fibrillation include dysfunction of the heart’s pace making area, coronary artery disease, rheumatic heart disease, hypertension and hyperthyroidism.

Cardiomyopathy:  Cardiomyopathy is a serious disease in which the heart muscle becomes inflamed and weakened. It may be caused by viral infections, coronary heart disease or diseases involving other organs and the cause may be unknown. When the disease worsens, it can lead to heart failure, arrhythmias and heart valve problems

Heart Attack:  A heart attack occurs when a blocked coronary artery prevents blood from reaching sections of the heart muscle. If the blocked artery is not reopened quickly, the part of the heart supplied by that blood vessel begins to die. Symptoms can come on suddenly, or may start slowly and persist over time. Warning signs include discomfort in the chest or in the upper body, shortness of breath, a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.

Heart Failure:  Heart Failure, or congestive heart failure, is when the heart can’t pump enough blood to the organs. The heart works, but not as well as it should. This is usually a chronic, long-term condition and the risks for developing heart failure increases with age.  Risk also rises if you are overweight, diabetic, smoke, abuse alcohol or use cocaine. When the heart begins to fail, fluids pool in the body and can lead to swelling in the lower legs and ankles. Fluid also may collect in the lungs, causing shortness of breath.

Learn CPR

No one ever knows when there may be a need to administer CPR to save a life…of a loved one, a child or anyone in need.  Learn CPR to be prepared in case of need.  CPR training is available in a variety of formats.  Explore the options below to learn what may serve you best!

  • American Heart Association:  Go to and search “Learn CPR”.  Options vary from Hands-Only CPR  (Watch a Video….Save a Life),  to Friends and Family CPR Anytime ( a kit with video and manikin that can be done in your home),  to finding a class nearby.  Call 877-AHA-4CPR to learn more.

  • American Red Cross:  Go to and click on CPR: “Find a Course”

  • CPR Task Force of Fort Wayne and Allen County offers free “Hands only CPR” several times each year.  To learn more, visit or call 260-427-1164.

  • Interested in CPR classes for your employees? Contact Parkview Occupational Health at (260) 373-9017, or click here for additional information.


    Lobby educational information

    In our lobby, you’ll find information with practical implications, such as how to accomplish healthy lifestyle changes, as well as local community offerings to support your behavior change efforts.


    Nutrition information

    Nutrition affects many factors associated with cardiovascular disease, including (but not limited to) body weight, cholesterol and triglyceride levels, blood pressure and blood sugar levels. Improving your diet is an important component in the prevention or progression of heart disease.

    We have an in-house Nutrition Department at our main office, where our registered dietitian consults one-on-one with patients and their families on the benefits — and often the necessity — of adopting low fat, low cholesterol and low sodium diets as well as other healthy regimens. To schedule a one-hour consultation with the dietitian, call (260) 266-6014. Appointments are available Tuesday through Thursday during normal business hours.

    Do you have a nutrition question? You can email our dietitian at and get your nutrition answers electronically.


    Because nutrition can be a major determinant of cardiovascular health, we would like to provide you with cookbooks to get you on the right rack. At our main office at 11108 Parkview Circle in north Fort Wayne, we currently sell Quick and Health, Volume III, by Brenda J. Ponichtera ($15), to patients and the community.



    To encourage you to make healthy lifestyle changes,  we sell quality America On the Move® pedometers at our main office, 11108 Parkview Circle on the PRMC campus, Entrance 10, at cost ($18) to our patients and the community.

    Pedometers are worn on your waistband, typically in line with your knee, or at the side-seam of your slacks.  . Based on your body’s movements, your pedometer will count your steps.  Pedometers also include conversion charts to assist you in tracking all non-walking physical activity, such as dancing, biking, gardening and more.   Pedometers are great tools for motivation, serving as a constant reminder of how active (or inactive) you have been.  While many people believe only vigorous activity can improve your cardiovascular health, people who increase their daily steps typically show improvements in weight, body fat, cholesterol levels and overall fitness level.

    General Nutrition Recommendations for Heart Healthy Eating: 

    • Achieve and maintain your ideal body weight by limiting foods high in calories and low in nutrient density (sugars, soft drinks, candy).

    • Eat at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables a day.

    • Choose a variety of colors of these foods to reap different antioxidant and nutrient benefits.

    • Choose a variety of legumes, nuts, soy products, low fat or fat free dairy products, and whole grain breads, cereals, pastas and rice.

    • Choose oils, margarines and food products high in monounsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids, low in saturated fats and trans fat free, such as canola oil, soybean and soybean oil, flaxseed, and walnuts.

    • Eat baked, broiled or grilled fish as least twice per week, especially fish high in omega-3 fatty acids (salmon, mackerel, herring, lake trout, sardines or albacore tuna).

    • Limit or avoid foods high in saturated and trans fats, such as red meat, high fat dairy products, and bakery items.

    • If you consume alcohol, limit to 2 drinks per day for a man or 1 drink per day for a woman.

    • Limit your sodium consumption. Consume less than 2,300 mg sodium per day.

    • Be physically active by enjoying at least 30 minutes of activity on most (or all) days of the week.






















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