Heart Healthy Foods To Include In Your Diet

What is a Heart Healthy Diet? 

Heart diseases are recorded to be the leading killer of men and women—and claims more lives than all forms of cancer combined. Being diagnosed with cardiovascular disease, the individual can face an emotional toll, affecting mood, outlook on life, and quality of life. While weight control and regular exercise are essential for keeping your heart in shape and healthy, the food you eat matters just as much. 

In fact, along with the other healthy lifestyle choices, a cardiac diet may reduce your risk of heart disease or stroke by up to 80%. This diet plan contains food-fruits, veggies, whole grain, lean poultry, and fish, which are nutrient-rich foods. It also avoids saturated fats, Trans fats, and excess sodium and sugar.   

If you’re looking to improve your cardiovascular health, diet for heart disease, high cholesterol, or high blood pressure, these heart-healthy diet tips can help you manage these conditions and lower your risk of heart strokes or attack. This article discusses various heart-healthy foods and suggests healthy meals.

Heart-Healthy Foods 

Having a cardiac diet is very important. It is necessary to eat plenty of heart-healthy foods that include green vegetables and fruits rich in fiber and Omega-3 fatty acids.  

Fruits and Vegetables 

Fruits and vegetables are undoubtedly one of the healthiest foods. With providing a boost to your immune system, they also provide nutrients to your body, which is necessary and help reduce inflammation. Plus, by consuming more fruits and vegetables, the less junk you’re liable to eat. The American Heart Association recommends having your plate half-filled with veggies and fruits during every meal. The fact that every vegetable and fruit is right for you, as long as you’re eating them without added salts and sugars. Try to pick more of the non-starchy vegetables like potatoes and sweet potatoes. The white vegetables like onion, cauliflower, and mushroom are a great form of nutrients. The most recommended vegetables and fruits are spinach, tomato, carrots, asparagus, broccoli, black pepper, and potato.

Fish 

Several studies show that eating fish or shellfish at least once a week reduces the chances of heart diseases or strokes by more than one half. Oily fish, such as salmon, halibut, swordfish, and tuna, appear to be particularly beneficial.

Trans fat and Saturated Fat

For a healthier diet, avoid eating any fat type, as fats are linked to heart diseases. Trans fat is banned from processed food, but it still contains a small amount of trans fat. For example, peanut butter and packed cakes. For a trans free diet, choose baked food over fried once, and have red meat twice a week. Now talking about saturated fat, it is found in dairy products and meat. Avoid consuming food with a high saturated meal like beef, pork, lamb, and high dairy products.

Salt 

Excess amount of salt in your diet is bad for your coronary artery. The reason behind being that extra sodium increases the blood volume in your blood vessels increases blood pressure and makes your heart pump harder. The preferred amount of salt to intake per day for low blood pressure is 1,500 milligrams. Instead of using the regular salt on your table, use herbs and spices. Also, beware of the hidden salt present in food like cookies, cereals, sauces, etc.

Sugar

The average amount of sugar consumed by each American per day is up to 22 teaspoons. According to the American Heart Association, women should consume six tablespoons, and men should consume nine tablespoons of sugar every day. To avoid the intake of excessive sugar, you should avoid soft drinks, cakes, cookies, sweetened yogurt, and sweet bread and waffles.

Breakfast ideas 

Healthy Omelet: 1 egg + 2 egg whites with ¼ to ½ an avocado and veggies with a few tbsp. hummus or ½ cup baked sweet potato

Tofu Scramble: Tofu (or egg) scramble with tomato, spinach, black beans, garlic, and a few slices of avocado with one slice of 100% whole wheat bread.

Lunch Ideas

 

Turkey Burger: For a burger from lean ground turkey with scallion and red pepper and top with few slices of avocado (or one slice Swiss cheese), served in low sodium brown rice tortilla or steamed collard greens

Avocado Tuna Salad: Tuna salad made with ½ mashed avocado with sliced grapes and few chopped walnuts, lettuce, and a slice of tomato on one slice of whole-grain bread or the bed of greens.

 Dinner Ideas 

Turkey Meatballs: Make your meatballs with one pound lean ground turkey, ½ cup quick Feta oats, one egg, ½ tsp dried oregano, and little pepper. When they’re done cooking, drizzle them with olive oil.

Chicken: Bake chicken, and serve it with a side of ½ cup baked butternut squash, ½ cup sautéed broccoli, and ½ cup quinoa mixed. Top with a sprinkle of feta cheese

 

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