If you want a healthy heart, eating right is the key. Eating a balanced diet while maintaining a healthy weight and engaging in physical activity are proven ways to prevent heart disease.
Whole grains, fruits, and vegetables are ideal foods to support cardiovascular health. These low-cal/sat fat sources contain vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and phytoestrogens which all work to protect our hearts from heart attacks.
Diet is the cornerstone of heart health; one proven way is through eating plenty of fruits and vegetables rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals and antioxidants that protect your cardiovascular system and can reduce your risk for cardiovascular disease.
Berries are among the top foods for heart health due to their high water content and abundance of anthocyanins – special compounds which provide protection from oxidative stress and inflammation that could increase risk for cardiovascular disease.
Tomatoes are another heart-friendly food thanks to their abundant lycopene content, which has been found to reduce stroke risks. Furthermore, tomatoes’ potassium-richness helps balance out salt intake and maintain optimal blood pressure levels.
Citrus fruits are another heart-healthy food packed with vitamin C, flavonoids and antioxidants that may help fight inflammation. Plus, oranges’ soluble fiber pectin helps prevent cholesterol oxidation which could otherwise block blood flow by sticking to arterial walls.
To safeguard the health of your heart, eating plenty of vegetables is key. Vegetables contain vital vitamins, minerals, fiber and phytochemicals which support cardiovascular wellbeing.
Vegetables like spinach, kale, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower and arugula contain an abundance of antioxidants that may lower the risk of cardiovascular disease and contain dietary nitrates that help lower blood pressure while supporting cell functions in blood vessels.
Leafy greens are an excellent source of Vitamin K, which can help protect arteries and promote proper blood clotting. Furthermore, they’re packed with soluble fiber which is beneficial for lowering LDL (bad) cholesterol and maintaining heart health.
Dark leafy greens such as salad greens, Swiss chard, spinach, collard/mustard greens and turnip greens can help your heart by providing essential potassium and magnesium-rich nutrients as well as essential calcium, iron and zinc-based essential nutrients.
Beans are an excellent source of plant-based protein, helping to lower cholesterol and blood pressure while providing fiber, B vitamins and essential minerals like iron, zinc magnesium and phosphorous.
Recent research found that those who consumed more legumes – specifically beans – experienced lower risks of cardiovascular disease as well as decreased body weight, waist circumference, and other cardiometabolic risk factors.
Beans contain soluble fiber to help you feel full for longer, which decreases cravings for processed snacks and can aid weight loss. They also contain resistant starch which moves through your digestive system feeding the “good” bacteria that keep you healthy.
Beans have also been shown to help lower levels of homocysteine, an amino acid linked to heart disease and stroke, with its blood levels dropping by 21% on average. Beans’ antioxidant quercetin may protect your heart against free radical damage while their potassium and magnesium content helps support healthy blood pressure levels.
Oats are an excellent source of heart-healthy nutrients like manganese, phosphorous, magnesium, copper and iron as well as being an excellent source of dietary fiber, biotin vitamin B1 and zinc.
Oatmeal can help to lower LDL (bad) cholesterol in your body, decreasing your risk of heart disease and stroke. Furthermore, oatmeal provides potassium and calcium which may also help lower blood pressure.
Oatmeal contains an antioxidant group known as avenanthramides which have been proven to boost levels of nitric oxide gas that helps dilate blood vessels and improve blood flow.
Oatmeal is an excellent source of dietary fiber, helping to combat cholesterol build-up while also controlling blood sugar. Furthermore, oatmeal can aid weight loss efforts by providing satiety.