A healthy diet is not only good for your waist, but more so for your heart. A healthy heart has many benefits such as reducing the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases. Let’s admit it, not everything that we eat is in our heart’s favor. Most of the time, excessive consumption of fatty and oily food (meaning: fries and burgers) is only detrimental to your heart’s overall health.
Here are some of the foods that are good for your heart.
Salmon, tuna, mackerel, trout and herring are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential nutrients. Omega-3 can prevent dangerous heart rhythms.
Specifically, healthy nuts like almonds, walnuts, and hazelnuts. They are good for lowering the cholesterol levels in the blood.
Berries are a good source of soluble fiber and phytonutrients that help in reducing the risk of heart attacks. Blueberries, cranberries, raspberries, and strawberries can be eaten as-is or in yogurt or cereal.
Flaxseeds, most specifically, contain fatty acids and phytoestrogens that boost the heart’s health. Other healthy seeds include grape seeds, pomegranate seeds, sunflower seeds and chia seeds.
Particularly, dark beans like kidney and black beans. Beans have various heart-protective chemicals such as fiber, B vitamins, and minerals.
Steel cut and coarse oats contain more fiber, folate, potassium and omega-3 fatty acids. Aside from lowering bad cholesterol in the bloodstream, oats also help in keeping arteries clear.
More so, veggies that are red, yellow and orange in color. Red peppers, acorn squash, sweet potatoes and carrots contain fiber, vitamins and carotenoids that keep the heart in healthy condition.
Spinach is a leafy green vegetable that contains fiber, potassium, folate and lutein. Eating spinach not only reduces the risks of heart attacks, but it also boosts the survival rate of those who have suffered from an attack. Kale is also considered a super veggie.
Asparagus is not only low in calories, but it is also packed with folate, fiber and beta carotene. Asparagus is also high in asparagine, an amino acid that also serves as a natural diuretic.
Broccoli, even crisp and fresh florets, is packed with folate, calcium, fiber, potassium and vitamins C and E. As such, it keeps arteries unclogged and allows for better blood pumping.
Tomatoes are rich in vitamin C, lycopene, niacin, potassium, folate and beta carotene. Tomatoes purify the blood as they cut the risk of heart diseases by 26%
Specific fruits that are helpful to the heart are papaya, oranges, and cantaloupe. They are rich in potassium, magnesium, fiber and beta carotene. Others are apple, apricot, banana, grapefruit, kiwi, and peach.
Tofu is considered as a meat substitute. Tofu, which helps in reducing the risk of heart diseases while improving bone density, contains protein and calcium. A 25-gram tofu daily is enough for a day.
Red wine, when consumed in moderation, has beneficial effects on the heart since it is packed with antioxidants and resveratrol. These key ingredients prevent blood vessel damage and reduce bad cholesterol.
Yes, dark chocolate is good for the heart, too. Dark chocolates usually contain 70% cocoa which is responsible for improved heart function. Cocoa also helps in restoring the flexibility of the arteries.
You can use any, most or all of the above in creating your very own version of a healthy diet. Know that eating these healthy foods can make a big difference in your cardiovascular health.
Justin is a Filipino blogger and a self-proclaimed foodie. He currently writes and blogs for Hizon’s, a top catering services in the Philippines that cater to any type of events.