8 small steps for better heart health

1. Take a 10-minute walk.  If you don't exercise at all, a brief walk is a great way to start. If you do, it's a good way to add more exercise to your day.

2. Give yourself a lift.  Lifting a hardcover book or a two-pound weight a few times a day can help tone your arm muscles.

3. Eat one extra fruit or vegetable a day.  Fruits and vegetables are inexpensive, taste good, and are good for everything from your brain to your bowels.

4. Make breakfast count.  Start the day with some fruit and a serving of whole grains, like oatmeal, bran flakes, or whole-wheat toast.

5. Stop drinking your calories.  Cutting out just one sugar-sweetened soda or calorie-laden latte can easily save you 100 or more calories a day.

6. Have a handful of nuts.  Walnuts, almonds, peanuts, and other nuts are good for your heart. Try grabbing some instead of chips or cookies when you need a snack,

7. Sample the fruits of the sea.  Eat fish or other types of seafood instead of red meat once a week. It's good for the heart, the brain, and the waistline.

8. Breathe deeply.  Try breathing slowly and deeply for a few minutes a day. It can help you relax. Slow, deep breathing may also help lower blood pressure.