There is an adage that says, “the heart wants what it wants.”
In this case, we’re talking about food and the diet your heart truly desires.
According to the American Heart Association, a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, whole grains, poultry, fish, low-fat dairy products, nuts, legumes, and non-tropical vegetable oils is vital to heart health.
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S. About 655,000 Americans die from heart disease each year. According to the CDC, one person dies every 36 seconds in the U.S. from heart disease.
By living a healthy lifestyle, you can lower your risk of heart disease and heart attack. Try incorporating these 5 foods into your diet to keep your heart happy and healthy.
5 Foods to Maximize Your Heart Health
Berries are some of the healthiest foods you can eat and they provide a wealth of nutrients. They are a great source of polyphenols and fiber. Blackberries, strawberries, blueberries, cranberries, and raspberries are not only very nutritious but are also known for their contribution to improving cardiovascular health. Studies have shown berries to be associated with decreased risks of cardiovascular disease due to the natural antioxidants and polyphenols they contain. The antioxidants and polyphenols in berries help fight chronic diseases, diabetes, and even cancer. Not to mention, berries are also gluten-free, low in calories, and high in moisture and fiber. These benefits of berries just keep getting sweeter.
2. Fatty fish
Eating fatty fish twice a week keeps your heart strong and not weak. Fatty fish is not only just a great source of protein, but it is also a great source of omega-3 fatty acids which is great for heart health. The American Heart Association recommends eating fatty fish twice a week. Fatty fish includes fish such as salmon, mackerel, herring, lake trout, sardines, and albacore tuna. Research shows omega-3 fatty acids can reduce your risk of heart disease, heart attack, and stroke. Omega-3-fatty acids can lower some types of fat in your blood and reduce the amount of plaque buildup in your arteries.
3. Mixed nuts
Did you know you can lower your risk of a heart attack by increasing your nut intake? Research shows nuts contribute to heart health because of the unsaturated fatty acids and nutrients they contain. Nuts can lower your low-density lipoprotein (LDL), cholesterol, and triglyceride levels. All three of these are responsible for plaque buildup in your arteries. Eating nuts can also lower levels of inflammation and reduce the risk of developing blood clots which further increases your risk of heart disease. Walnuts, almonds, macadamia nuts, hazelnuts, and pecans make great for a healthy snack. Fiber and Vitamin E are also found in nuts which play a major role in lowering your cholesterol and stopping the development of plaques in your arteries.
4. Whole grains
Studies show incorporating more whole grains in your diet benefits your heart health. The most common types of whole grains include whole wheat, brown rice, oats, rye, barley, buckwheat, and quinoa. Whole grains are high in fiber and are associated with lower cholesterol and a reduced risk of heart disease. According to the American Heart Association’s “Whole grains and the heart” review, eating whole grains can reduce your risk of heart disease by up to 30%. Three servings of whole grains per day can help your heart stay healthy. For people who need to lower their cholesterol, reduce weight, or control their blood sugar levels, whole grains can help.
5. Leafy green vegetables
Leafy green vegetables include spinach, kale, and collard greens and provide a wealth of nutrients. A great source of Vitamin K, leafy green vegetables contain a plethora of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Vitamin K plays a major role in protecting your arteries and improving arterial function. Leafy green vegetables are also high in dietary nitrates which have been shown to reduce blood pressure and improve the function of cells lining the blood vessels. Studies show leafy green vegetables are linked to a lower risk of heart disease and better heart health.
How Trusted ER Can Help You
Although eating healthy plays a critical role in the promotion of heart health, it is not only dependent on what you eat. Physical activity and exercise are optimal for heart health as well. Exercising for 30 mins or more a day can lower your risk of cardiovascular disease.
If your chest pain and heart problems are severe, seek emergency care at one of our Trusted ER locations near you. At Trusted Medical, are here for you and ready to treat any illness or injury.
We have 8 locations where we provide the best-in-class healthcare to patients in the most comfortable environment with exceptional care. Our ER offers limited wait times, as each of our patients is roomed and seen by our clinical team within a few minutes, and we are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
For more healthy food ideas or dietary advice that is specific to your needs, consult with a registered dietitian or healthcare provider. Be sure to check out our blog for more healthy lifestyle content.
Trusted ER is “Doing the right thing. Every patient. Every time.”