16th Annual Heart Healthy Dinner Benefits MemorialCare Heart & Vascular Institute

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Chef William Freidman conducts a cooking demonstration with walnuts, dark chocolate and red wine at the annual heart healthy dinner hosted by the MemorialCare Heart & Vascular Institute at Long Beach Memorial.

On Feb. 20, the MemorialCare Heart & Vascular Institute at Long Beach Memorial hosted its 16th annual heart healthy dinner to promote overall cardiovascular health and demonstrate heart smart cooking tips. More than 120 attendees enjoyed a heart healthy meal featuring American cuisine prepared by the chefs at Long Beach Memorial.

“To prevent cardiovascular disease, it’s important to monitor your risk factors,” says Gregory Thomas, M.D., MPH, medical director, MemorialCare Heart & Vascular Institute, Long Beach Memorial. “Making lifestyle changes, such as improved diet, can significantly reduce common risk factors like high blood pressure, high cholesterol and obesity. The goal of the heart healthy dinner is to teach the community about the lifestyle changes that are within their control.”

MemorialCare Heart & Vascular Institute

Gregory Thomas, M.D., medical director, MemorialCare Heart & Vascular Institute, Long Beach Memorial, presents strategies, like improving your diet, to promote overall cardiovascular health.

Dr. Thomas was just one of the evening’s speakers who presented strategies for healthy living, along with Cathy Fagen, registered dietician, Long Beach Memorial; and Henry Van Gieson, M.D., medical director, cardiac rehabilitation, MemorialCare Heart & Vascular Institute, Long Beach Memorial, who served as the master of ceremonies.

Following the speakers, Chef Freidman conducted a cooking demonstration using walnuts, dark chocolate and red wine while discussing various ways to cook for a healthy heart.

Proceeds from the heart healthy dinner help fund the Cardiac Rehabilitation Program at the MemorialCare Heart & Vascular Institute at Long Beach Memorial. The Cardiac Rehabilitation Program helps heart care patients recover quickly and return to doing the things they love. The goal of cardiac rehabilitation is to instill lifestyle changes that stabilize, slow or even reverse the progress of cardiovascular disease. The Cardiac Rehabilitation Program supports various heart conditions including angina, heart attack, coronary bypass surgery, coronary angioplasty, atherectomy, stent implants, heart valve repair or replacement and heart transplant surgery.

“It’s great to see former patients return to the heart healthy dinner year after year,” says Joanne Morrison, RN, manager, cardiac rehabilitation, Long Beach Memorial. “Knowing that they’re still committed to a healthy lifestyle means we’ve done our job.”

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