Heart disease has been the culprit of millions of deaths of Americans. Of all the people who die annually, approximately 40% of them can be attributed to heart disease. Risk factors that are uncontrollable are family history and the aging process in general, but many risk factors can be controlled by a simple change in diet.
High blood cholesterol and blood pressure are two of the main risk factors that greatly increase a person’s risk of having a heart attack or stroke. These may be caused by foods high in saturated and trans fats, which cause an increase blood cholesterol levels. The amount of cholesterol in foods should be limited in order to keep LDLs, or bad cholesterol at a moderate level. Overall, the amount of fat consumed per day should only be 20-30% of the total calories.
The foods below are some of the best foods for lowering your risk of heart disease. Not only are they good for your heart, but they are beneficial for the rest of the body as well.
1. Almonds are full of heart-healthy B vitamins. They also contain vitamin E, magnesium, and zinc. Vitamin E is responsible for destroying free radicals in the body that are connected to stress and heart disease. Snack on a handful of almonds or chop them and add to a salad.
2. Blueberries are rich in both antioxidants and vitamin C, which can help curb stress. This fruit is also low in calories and sugar so you can snack on them as much as you want. Try putting them in your morning cereal or blend them in to a smoothie for an afternoon snack.
3. Salmon. This fish is packed with Omega-3 fatty acids, which are extremely healthy for the heart. This can help reduce inflammation in the body and may reduce your risk for heart disease. Grill salmon with a marinade and serve it with broccoli and rice.
4. Beans are legumes contain B vitamins, which are excellent for the heart. They are also packed with a protein, iron, calcium, and fiber. Add any type of beans to soup or use them in a vegetable dip.
5. Broccoli is packed with B vitamins and folic acid, which can help reduce stress and anxiety. It also contains vitamin E, vitamin C, potassium, calcium, and fiber. Dip broccoli in hummus or sauté with olive oil and add a splash of lemon juice for extra flavor.
Don’t forget to buy these heart healthy foods the next time you’re at the grocery store!
Assistance by Morgan Hoover