Food and health

Heart Healthy foods

Soniya Rai
March 3,2021

heart healthy

We all know that the Heart is the most vital organ in our body but being an internal organ we don't see its bleeding or suffering. We will only know when it becomes a serious pain. Due to busy day-to-day activities we don't really seem caring for the lifespan of healthy heart. And in very few case, heart disease comes from either genic inheritance or from birth, but most of all it happens due to our carelessness in our diet. So, here are few to learn about foods for a heart failure, as well as foods that worsen the condition.

Eating foods for a healthy heart involves keeping to a nutrient-rich diet. Primary sources are plant-based foods, including fruits, vegetables, nuts, whole grains, and beans. Moderate amounts of dairy and fish are beneficial as well.

A diet that can help prevent or manage heart failure also excludes certain foods. Experts recommend limiting the intake of salty foods and those that are high in saturated fat, such as sausage and fatty cuts of red meat.

Foods to prevent or manage heart failure

It is noted that eating a varied, high quality diet can help prevent poor outcomes in people with heart failure.

A study examined the effect of diet on individuals with the condition. It found that those with deficiencies in seven or more micronutrients had almost twice the risk of hospitalization and death compared with those with few deficiencies.

Micronutrients

Micronutrients consist of vitamins and minerals, such as calcium, magnesium, and Vitamin C. Deficiencies of micronutrients tend to be due to inadequate intake of high quality foods, which are mainly plant-based foods.

Fiber

In addition to a high content of micronutrients, plant foods are rich in fiber. Fiber is also important for a heart-healthy diet. High fiber food include:

  • fruits, such as blackberries, raspberries, pears, and oranges
  • vegetables, including chickpeas
  • nuts, such as almonds and pistachios
  • whole grains, such as brown rice, oatmeal and 100% whole grain bread
  • legumes, such as beans and peas

Fish

Moderate amounts of fish can also be beneficial for heart health, as fish are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids slower plaque growth in arteries, among other things which enhances the health of our heart.

Dairy

It is also advised eating moderate quantities of dairy products because full fat dairy foods have higher bioavailability of nutrients than low fat versions. Bioavailability refers to the body’s ability to absorb and use nutrients. It is also found that fermented dairy foods, such as yoghurt and cheese are beneficial for heart health.

The Mediterranean diet

The Mediterranean diet is not one specific diet but a dietary pattern that emphasizes consumption of vegetables, fruits, and pulses, along with moderate intake of fish and dairy products. The people following the Mediterranean diet lower the risk of heart failure and death from the condition.

Food and beverages to avoid

Following are the foods that you should avoid in order to make your Heart healthy .

Salty food

Avoiding excessive salt consumption is important for reducing the risk of heart failure.

The following tips to help people lower their salt intake:

  • Eat large amounts of vegetables and fruits, which naturally contain small amounts of salt.
  • Use herbs and spices, such as  onion, garlic, and sodium-free herbal seasonings, to flavor foods.
  • Limit the use of condiments, such as ketchup and mustard.
  • Avoid fast foods and processed foods.
  • Choose salt-free snacks, such as carrot and unsalted almonds.
  • Check food labels for sodium content when shopping for groceries.
  • Try to cook at home and save eating out for an occasional treat.

Saturated fat and fried foods

Eating foods high in saturated fat or trans fat may contribute to heart disease. Trans fat is a type of oil that turns into solid fat during food processing.

Foods containing saturated fats include:

  • high fat cuts of meat
  • butter
  • coconut oil
  • palm oil
  • ice cream

Foods containing trans fats may include:

  • fried foods
  • store-bought cookies, pies, and crackers

Alcohol

It is found that people who limit their alcohol consumption to moderate amounts have a lower risk of heart failure.

It is recommended men limit their daily alcohol intake to no more than two drinks, and females — to no more than one drink for a healthy heart.

Heart failure and its causes

In this condition, the heart does not pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs. It can affect the right side, the left side, or both sides of the heart.

Right sided heart failure involves the inability of the heart to pump enough blood to the lungs to collect oxygen. In left sided heart failure, the heart is unable to pump enough oxygen-rich blood to all parts of the body.

Heart failure may be due to conditions that overwork, damage, and weaken the heart. When this happens, the body releases certain substances into the blood that have a toxic effect on the heart.

These conditions include:

  • high blood pressure
  • diabetes
  • ischemic heart disease, where plaque builds up inside arteries, which can lead to a heart attack or stroke
  • other heart diseases

Prevention

While a healthful diet plays a vital role in promoting heart health, other lifestyle practices can help as well. People may try the following:

  • quitting smoking, if applicable
  • exercising regularly
  • learning to manage stress
  • getting enough sleep
  • maintaining a moderate weight

Foods that help prevent or manage heart failure include dietary items that are rich in micronutrients, which nourish the entire body, including the heart. These come mainly from plant-based foods.

The Mediterranean diet is an example of an eating plan that benefits the heart, because it prioritizes plant foods while including moderate amounts of fish and dairy products.

People may also reduce their risk of heart failure by adopting some lifestyle changes, such as quitting smoking, doing exercise regularly, and getting enough sleep each night.

I hope these few simple healthy food habits will really help you in increasing the lifespan of your healthy heart. Don't be negligence to your heart as I said, we'll only know when it's degrading rapidly and at that time even if we want then we can't make heart function as like before.

Meet the Blogger

blog - Soniya Rai

Soniya Rai

PEACE BEGINS FROM INSIDE.

I’m Soniya on the race of doin’ sth new which brought me to this blogging spot. 19 y/o germinating medico; gonna paint my canvas with hues of sentiments.

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