It’s very easy to take our hearts for granted.
It works hard for us 24/7 for the entire duration of our allotted lifespan. Yes, we might push it more at times when we put it through a gruelling workout or run when we’re late for an appointment, but for the most part, we don’t even have to think about our little ticker. It just keeps on giving! Setting this aside, we can’t take it for granted especially as heart disease still ranks as a leading cause of death.
Aside from a regular fitness regime, another easy way to show your heart some care and love is to make sure you’re eating right. A varied diet full of fruit, vegetables and healthy fats has been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, so pile up your plate with the following 7 delicious heart-friendly foods to keep your heart strong and healthy.
Avocadoes are full of fibre, magnesium, and even more potassium than a banana. Avocados also contain those infamous healthy fats, which lower bad cholesterol (LDL) and raise good cholesterol (HDL).
As well as helping to build healthy blood cells, spinach (and other leafy greens) contains lutein, an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory that protects your arteries from plaque build-up which, in turn, helps prevent heart attacks.
Fibrous whole grains work overtime to lower your cholesterol and blood pressure, which is essential in cardiovascular health. Aim for 2-3 daily servings of whole grains to lower your risk of heart attacks. This could be gluten-free oatmeal for breakfast and a side of brown rice for dinner. It’s as easy as that.
Pulses are a nutritional powerhouse containing protein, fibre, folate, potassium, iron, copper, manganese and so on. And they’re not full of saturated fats, trans fats, cholesterol, and sodium. This is great when it comes to strengthening your heart health.
Alas, I don’t mean to consume dark chocolate in larges volumes but in moderation. Dark chocolate contains properties that make for a happy heart. Cacao and chocolate’s minerals are full of antioxidants that help fight high blood pressure and cholesterol. Look for high-quality chocolate that’s cacao percentage is at least 70% or higher to extract the highest level of nutrients.
FATTY FISH & FISH OIL
Fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, sardines and tuna are loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, which have many heart-health benefits such as lowering blood pressure, cholesterol, and fasting blood sugar levels. If you don’t eat much seafood, fish oil supplementation is another option for getting your daily quota of omega-3 fatty acids such as this SUPER OMEGA.
Chia seeds, flaxseeds and hemp seeds are all great sources of heart-healthy nutrients, including fibre and omega-3 fatty acids. Numerous studies have found that adding these types of seeds to your diet can improve many heart disease risk factors, including inflammation, blood pressure, cholesterol and triglycerides.
As new evidence emerges, the link between diet and heart disease grows stronger. What you put on your plate can influence just about every aspect of heart health, from blood pressure and inflammation to cholesterol levels and triglycerides.
Including these heart-healthy foods as part of a nutritious, well-balanced diet can help keep your heart in good shape and minimise your risk of heart disease.
Love Gaynor x