Cardiovascular diseases are becoming an alarming health concern these days due to various reasons like unhealthy eating habits, work and personal life related stress, sedentary lifestyle and lack of exercises. Heart problems get doubled with high cholesterol levels and blood pressure thrown into the mix. Exercising isn’t alone is sufficient to maintain a healthy heart. One needs to eat the right foods too! Here’s a list of foods that are good for your heart.
Tomatoes are a good source of vitamins and acts as a blood purifier. Regular consumption of tomatoes is known to reduce the risk of heart diseases. Vitamin K present in tomatoes helps prevent occurrences of hemorrhages. Eat tomatoes in the raw form in salads or sandwiches, cooked form in gravies or simply, as the good old ketchup.
Almonds when eaten in moderation are known to lower cholesterol levels in the body and heart diseases. They also contain Vitamin B17, E and minerals like magnesium, iron, and zinc and are a good source of mono unsaturated fats.
Soy is essentially soy bean curd. They are also available in the form of soy chunks and soy mince easily in the market. Soy is an excellent healthy substitute for red meats which are high in fat, increase the bad cholesterol and saturated fats which are detrimental to the heart’s functioning.
Fish is good for the heart because it’s quite low in fat compared to red meat. Salmon is said to be one of the healthiest foods for the heart. That’s because salmon is rich source of Omega-3 fatty acids that are beneficial in fighting inflammation and the risk of blood clotting. These Omega-3 fatty acids also help lower cholesterol levels in the body.
GREEN LEAFY VEGETABLES:
Green leafy vegetable like spinach, fenugreek, pok choy, radish leaves and lettuce are healthy and are known to reduce the risk of heart diseases and cancer as well. That’s because they are extremely low in fat, calories and high in dietary fiber. They also contain folic acid, magnesium, calcium, potassium, etc. These minerals are beneficial for the optimum functioning of the heart. Studies have shown that one daily serving of green leafy vegetables can lower the risk of heart diseases by eleven percent.
An apple a day, will surely keep the doctor away because they contain guercetin, a phytochemical containing anti-inflammatory properties. It also helps in prevention of blood clots. Eat apples for breakfast with your cereal or eat them as a snack when you’re hungry instead of bingeing out on deep fried chips.
Olive oil is one of the healthiest oils available. Its consumption is actually good for the heart. Having olive oil as a regular part of your diet, helps lower LDL (bad cholesterol) in the body. Also, olive oil contains mono unsaturated fats that are good for the heart and are packed with anti oxidants. Extra virgin olive oil contains poly phenols and offers even greater health benefits. Pour some olive oil in your salad as a dressing instead of that unhealthy mayonnaise and high calorie dressings, or better still, substitute it for your normal cooking oil and see the difference.
Red wine when drunk in moderation can be very good for the heart because they contain a powerful anti oxidant called Resveratrol. Also, red wine contains flavonoids. Have red wine in moderation instead of guzzling other hard drinks that are high in sugars as well.
Whole grains whether it’s wheat, barley, millet, pulses and even beans for that matter, are good for the heart because they provide natural fiber and vitamins. They have vitamin E, iron, magnesium and a host of anti oxidants. Regular consumption of whole grains reduces blood pressure.