Do you ever wonder which foods fuel your heart? Today, we’re sharing a few of our favorite heart-healthy foods, as well as the incredible health benefits they pack. But why is it so important to eat for your heart’s benefit? Well, aside from reducing your risk of developing heart disease and preventing stroke, you’re also fueling your body to fight off other icky things and keep that waistline looking trim! Overall, according to the American Heart Association, you’ll want to aim to include fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds, fish, and other healthy fats, but read on for our list of favorites.
Oatmeal, and other whole grains, is great for controlling cholesterol and is equally as delicious! Just be sure to watch the sugar content in instant oatmeal it can get pretty high. Instead, microwave 1 cup of water or milk and ½ cup of rolled oats. Once the oats are fully cooked, add ¼ cup of fresh berries, ¼ cup of your favorite nuts, and a packet of Stevia.
Speaking of blueberries, these little guys are great for your heart! They’re loaded with flavonoids which give berries their vibrant color and also contribute to keeping the circulatory system running fluidly by eliminating any plaque buildup in our arteries. Not to mention, they contribute to a healthy memory! Add a handful of freshly washed berries to your oatmeal, yogurt, or simply enjoy them as a little snack.
Salmon and other fatty fish are the rockstars of heart-healthy food. They’re packed with omega-3 fatty acids that help fight cardiovascular disease and chronic flares associated with RA, psoriatic arthritis, and MS! More on Omega-3’s here. Want to give salmon a try? Place a fillet of fresh salmon on a tin foil lined baking sheet. Top with olive oil, a pinch of salt and pepper, and sliced lemons and bake at 375℉ for 15-20 minutes. Top with fresh dill and enjoy!
04 Green Veggies
Aside from being packed with vitamins and fiber, green veggies, like broccoli, kale, brussels sprouts, and zucchini, contain carotenoids which serve as antioxidants and cleanse your body of icky things like heart disease! According to a study, “the resistance of LDL to oxidation is increased by high dietary antioxidant intake, so that carotenoids, as part of food patterns such as the Mediterranean diet, may have beneficial effects on cardiovascular health.” In other words, eat your veggies for great heart health!
05 Herbs + Spices
This one might be slightly unexpected, but let us not forget how harmful salt can be to our hearts. Season your food with fresh herbs and spices for optimal flavor and to avoid unnecessary salt intake. Too much salt can contribute to increased water weight and increased blood pressure. Click here to watch our video on spices. And click here to read our blog post on our favorite fresh herbs.