Finding foods that are healthy for the heart is easier than you could have ever imagined. You will also be surprised that they taste good and are readily available. Reportedly, cardiovascular disease (CVD) ranks top in the causes of deaths in America. Health experts remind these statistics to people leading sedentary lifestyles.
In essence, living a sedentary lifestyle also involves consumption of unhealthy foods combined with little or irregular activity. Understandably, tight work schedules make it difficult to find time to exercise regularly and eat well. However, with a little planning, you can strike the balance and live a healthy life.
So, what are the steps that you can take to ensure that you provide proper nutrition to the heart?
Saturated fats have been linked to high cholesterol levels. As such, if you can find a way to limit foods that have saturated fats, you will be eating your way to a healthy life and reduce the risk of coronary heart disease. To get you started, rid your diet of saturated fat by trimming fat off the meat you eat. Lean meat with less than 10% fat is ideal. Additionally, limit solid fats such as butter and margarine.
This is a no-brainer. In addition to being a rich source of vitamins and minerals, vegetables and fruits are rich in dietary fiber. Their calories are very low meaning that they do not have any impact on your weight. It is also thought that adding fruits and vegetables to your diet reduces the amounts of meat, snacks, and other high-fat foods.
Sodium is essentially found in salt. Excessive sodium is said to be a contributing factor for high blood pressure. Adults are required to take no more than a teaspoon of salt, which is 2300mg, every day. Older people beyond 50 years or those diagnosed with diabetes should not exceed half teaspoon of salt a day.
Whole grains contain nutrients that are good for heart health. Incorporating whole grains into your meals may not be easy at first, but you can start by making small substitutions. Where possible, limit white flour, cakes, muffins, and white bread. Instead, use whole wheat flour and whole grains such as brown rice and barley.
Is your plate overloaded? Many people are delighted at the restaurant when their plate is excessively full, and they proceed to wipe out the plate clean. This should not be the case. You do not have to necessarily finish what is served on the plate. You are stuffing your body with too many calories than can be dissipated. Use smaller plates, eat selectively, and leave out what you know is not healthy for you. Eating healthy for the heart is more of a lifestyle change that is easy to adopt if you are willing to go down that road.