Why is it important to have a Heart Healthy Diet? Not only will such a diet reduce your risks of getting cardiovascular diseases; it will also work wonders for your bulging waistline. The trick to have a healthy heart is to include a variety of natural fruits and vegetables and whole foods in your daily diet.
Your heart health deserves to be a topmost priority and you will not want any dietary restrictions that can interfere with your normal life. So, it is best to look for heart health supplements. Heart supplements can help maintain optimal blood pressure levels, cholesterol levels, and boost endurance.
Easy Ways to Prevent Heart Problems with Heart-Healthy Diet:
- Increase Fruits and Vegetable Intake: Your diet should contain more fruits and veggies which are excellent sources of minerals and vitamins. These foods are fibre-rich and low-calorie, so you can consume these without any worries. These will help to suppress hunger cravings without harming your health.
- Portion Control: The best way to have a healthy heart is to limit the portions you eat. When you take too much food on your plate, you tend to overeat and gain unwanted calories. This is something which you must watch out for especially when you are eating out. It is important to include bigger portions of nutrient-rich and low-calorie foods such as vegetables and fruits, and tinier portions of high-calorie foods like processed and refined foods. Monitoring the number of servings you take for each meal helps you keep a check.
- Add Whole Grains: These can be great sources for dietary fibre and help to keep a check on blood pressure levels. When you include more whole grains in your meals like barley and quinoa, brown rice and whole-grain pasta you can guarantee a healthier heart.
- Cut down Unhealthy Fats: It is important to reduce your intake of unhealthy fats and trans fats. This will ensure that your cholesterol levels are in check and automatically cut down risks of coronary artery diseases. When you suffer from high cholesterol levels, there is excessive plaque-buildup in arteries which heightens risks of strokes and heart attacks. So, it is advisable to select lean meals having less than 10% fat.
Using low-fat substitutions like low-fat yoghurt and low-sodium salsa improve heart health and will help you to be successful in your Heart Healthy Diet plan. Olive oil or canola oil is a good dietary addition as these are low in fats. Polyunsaturated fats like those in seeds and nuts, avocado, and fish are good for a healthy heart.
6. Curtail Sodium Intake:
When there is excess sodium in meals, the risks of cardiovascular diseases go up. According to dietary guidelines from the American Heart Association, healthy grown-ups should not have in excess of 2300 mg of sodium every day. Most of the undesirable sodium comes from canned and processed foods; so, it is recommended that you cook your own stews and soups to control daily salt intake. You can also choose to use salt-free seasoning blends, low-salt condiments, herbs and spices, and avoid table salt, restaurant meals, canned soups, soy sauce and mayonnaise.
7. Add Low-Protein Foods in your Heart Healthy Diet
You may add low-fat dairy products, fish and poultry, lean meat and eggs to your everyday diet. It is best to avoid low-fat alternatives like skimmed milk instead of whole milk. Specific fish types which are omega3 fatty acid-rich help to keep triglycerides in your blood under control. For example, salmon, herring and mackerel are excellent sources of omega 3 fatty acids. Walnuts, flaxseed, canola oil and soybeans are popular sources of omega3. Low-protein foods like lentils, peas and beans are recommended as these have low-fat and zero cholesterol
8. Plan Meals:
This is a useful tip to lead a healthy life. This way you can cut down on foods which are harmful to your heart. You can include more fruits, whole grains, and veggies in the meals if you plan them in advance.
9. Have Cheat-Days: It is alright to pamper yourself once in a while. Having a small portion of French fries for a meal is not going to make you fall off the wagon.
Maintaining a healthy heart diet does not have to be a challenge if you know which food to include and which to avoid in your meals. Adding more fibre-rich foods, fish and natural foods, fruits and veggies to your everyday meals can help keep a check on high cholesterol and blood pressure levels.