ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

5 Of The Best Foods for Your Heart

Updated on February 3, 2017

Heart Healthy Foods

Heart Healthy Foods
Heart Healthy Foods

Heart Healthy Foods

In this day and age, it has becoming increasingly difficult to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Especially with availability of fast foods and ready made, microwave meals. It is often challenging to consume the necessary foods to maintain a healthy heart. In this article, we will outline some foods that you should include into your diet if you want to reduce the risk of heart disease.

What is The Perfect Heart Healthy Diet

Tomatoes are packed with vitamin C and lycopene
Tomatoes are packed with vitamin C and lycopene

Tomatoes

Tomatoes are excellent for the heart because they are rich in vitamin C and lycopene. According to Dr Mercola from Mercola.com, vitamin C is essential for the heart because it acts an antioxidant, aiding in the reparation of cell walls and arteries. It essential that we consume foods that are rich in vitamin C because the human body cannot produce vitamin C naturally. Therefore, consuming foods such as tomatoes, kiwis and oranges can help to reduce the risk of heart disease. Studies published in the Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine revealed that lycopene inhibits “the activity of an essential enzyme involved in cholesterol synthesis in an in vitro, and a small clinical study suggesting a hypocolesterolemic effect” However, there are many other factors relating to the prevention of cardiovascular disease. However, consuming plenty of foods that contain lycopene is a step in the right direction.


Heart healthy avocados
Heart healthy avocados

Avocados

Avocados contain heart-healthy monounsaturated fats. They are also contain potassium, which aids in blood pressure regulation. Avocados are a good source of carotenoids and Vitamin C, carotenoids protect cell membranes. They are lipid soluble, so they guard the unsaturated fatty acids in the membrane, preventing oxidation. Prevention of oxidation is essential because oxidation produces lipid peroxides, which are detrimental to heart health. To gain maximum health benefits from avocado consumption, pair them with spinach and other vegetables like parsnips and carrots, these combinations facilitate the assimilation of other antioxidants.


Heart healthy beans
Heart healthy beans

Beans

Just ½ a cup of beans daily can provide enough of the necessary vitamins and minerals to aid in the preventing cardiovascular related diseases. According to Lauryn Winsome, nutrition and fitness expert from London, UK. “Beans are an excellent for the health of the heart because they contain soluble fiber. The fiber attaches itself to the cholesterol, thus preventing it from being assimilated into the gut.” She suggests consuming white, pinto, lima and kidney beans on a regular basis. Beans also contain magnesium, calcium, omega 3 fatty acids and B complex vitamins.



Heart healthy fish
Heart healthy fish

Oily Fish

The American Heart Association recommends that we eat at least 2 portions of oily fish a week. Such as salmon or mackerel. This type of fish contain omega 3 fatty acids, according them, studies show that omega 3 fatty acids reduce the risk of arrhythmia's (irregular heartbeats). They also reduce triglycerides, as well reducing the growth of atherosclerotic plaque. Therefore, including a small amount of oily fish into your diet can in some way be considered a cardio-protective measure.


Almonds
Almonds

Almonds

Studies have shown that almonds can help to lower LDL cholesterol. Almonds contain plenty of vitamin E, protein and fiber. It is necessary to include these components into your diet to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. A fun way of incorporating almonds into your dietary plan, is to add them into your porridge oats in the morning, grind them to make almond flour and add them to your confectionary recipes. You could also make almond milk by blending a cup of almonds with 2 cups of water, preferably use a high speed blender. Then strain mixture to produce, delicious heart healthy almond milk. Use the almond milk pulp to create some delicious cookies, or you can dry them, blend them and make homemade almond flour.


Final Word


Incorporating heart healthy foods into your dietary plan can help to keep your heart healthy. However, there is no magic pill or special “superfood” that can prevent cardiovascular disease. Therefore, it is vital that you maintain a balanced, healthy lifestyle that includes plenty of exercise, healthy food, plenty of water and plenty of rest.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • intriguewriter profile image
      Author

      intriguewriter 7 months ago from worldwide

      Thanks for your comment, I try to incorporate all these foods into my diet as much as I can. I don't believe any food can totally prevent cardiovascular disease, but I definitely think the risks can be reduced.

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 7 months ago from Northern California, USA

      This is a very helpful article. I had always heard that these foods were good for the body, but knowing they are especially good for the heart places them on my "must-have" food list.

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 7 months ago from Nashville Tn.

      My heart must be healthy. I eat all of these wonderful foods and enjoy them so much. Excellent, informative hub!