It is a no-brainer that your diet should consist of healthy foods. However, did you know that certain healthy foods specifically target your heart? Heart-healthy foods are nutritious as a whole. In particular, they strive for the proper functioning of the heart.
As of recent studies, if you want to know the cause of one in four deaths, the common reason in India is cardiovascular diseases. With such soaring numbers, it is time to take charge of your health and take action. The heart beats non-stop, and it is only fair that it receives royal treatment in return.
Along with exercise, diet plays a crucial role in keeping your heart healthy. Those who regularly consume heart-healthy foods are bound to have a reduced risk of cardiovascular ailments.
10 Heart-Healthy Foods
Here is a list of 10 superfoods that are not only delicious but are also your heart’s new best friend.
All those who like to eat fish are in luck. They are delicious, filling, and, of course, heart-friendly. The healthy fats in fish lower the bad cholesterol in the body, reducing the risk of heart diseases. Especially, rohu, surmai, salmon, bangda and Basa and various other sweet water and sea fish are ideal options for this purpose.
We recommend no more than four teaspoons of oil per day. So, avoid frying the fish. Instead, you can grill or steam the fish and then sauté it with a drop of oil.
Don’t let their tiny size fool you. Seeds like pumpkin, chia and flax seeds are rich in omega3 as well as fibre. Both of which are ideal properties of heart-healthy foods. Moreover, these seeds are the perfect snack material. First, dry roast them separately or together and store them in an air-tight container. Then, grab a handful for a quick and healthy snack option.
Just like seeds, nuts are essential for the heart and contain immense goodness. In particular, you must add walnuts and almonds as part of your heart-healthy diet. Both of them contain fats that are necessary for the body. These fats lower the build-up of plaque in the coronary arteries. As a result, they reduce the levels of bad cholesterol and keep your heart free of diseases.
Indians thrive on spices. Not a day goes by without using at least one of them. So, this one should be like a walk in the park. Turmeric, coriander, cumin and cinnamon are just some of the heart-healthy spices to name. They help the heart by reducing chronic inflammations. Therefore, use them generously while cooking.
Garlic helps lower blood pressure and cholesterol in the body, which aids the healthy functioning of the heart. Indian food recipes have a tradition of adding garlic to gravies, dal and dry preparations. Surprisingly, this heart-healthy food gives its best results when eaten raw on an empty stomach. So crush them finely and swallow them.
You can never go wrong with green leafy vegetables. For example, spinach is highly beneficial to the heart due to its fibrous nature. Also, it is an excellent source of dietary magnesium and potassium. All of these nutrients help lower blood pressure which is one of the primary causes of cardiovascular diseases.
However, overcooking spinach loses its nutritional value. Avoid doing so and take it off the stove quickly.
This popular breakfast item is indeed a part of heart-healthy foods. As a whole, oats help the heart by reducing bad cholesterol in the body. In addition, Oats have a very high fibre content.
They are easy to cook and are ideal for morning meals. To have them as a snack, you can sprinkle some oat bran over yoghurt. It is highly satiating and fills up your stomach.
Yoghurt or curd has multiple benefits, one of which is its heart-friendly nature. When speaking of wholesome, healthy foods, curd steals the spot. It is a well-balanced source of protein, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals.
Moreover, it’s their high potassium and probiotic content that lowers blood pressure and cholesterol, respectively. That, in turn, reduces the risk of heart ailments.
9. Green tea
Green tea is excellent for weight loss and the heart, also a rich source of antioxidants. Antioxidants slow down the build-up of fat in the arteries. One of the leading causes of heart ailments happens to be fat deposits in the arteries. Ideally, you can have up to 2 cups of green tea per day as the recommended serving size.
High-fat products like meat and cheese are a danger to the heart, especially when consumed regularly. Soy can help you to balance out this concern. It is shallow in saturated fats and is also a rich source of protein. Hence, the various soy products are an excellent plant-based alternative for such foods. It works in favour of both vegetarians and non-vegetarians.
This article brings you a step closer to a healthy and happy heart. You are sure to find foods that best suit your diet and needs in this list. However, you must incorporate these heart-healthy foods regularly to gain their benefits and increase your quality of life.