Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the US. To keep your ticker in shape, add these foods to your daily health routine and kick the worst to the curb.
Tree nuts, especially walnuts, can lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and boost HDL (good) cholesterol. Devoted nut eaters are 25% less likely to die from heart disease than those who don't eat nuts.
Those who consume legumes daily have a 22% lower risk of heart disease than those who rarely do. Why? Beans are packed with fiber which can lower cholesterol and blood pressure. Beans easily replace animal protein, which is source of saturated fat and cholesterol.
Best: Extra Virgin Olive Oil
A diet rich in olive oil may be able to slow down the aging of the heart. Olive oil is an essential part of cooking in the Mediterranean region where people live longer and have very low incidence of heart disease. Use olive oil as a substitute for butter, margarine, or vegetable oil.
Kick these Out:
A high sugar diet can increase your risk of heart disease by raising triglyceride levels. Also, diets high in sugar usually aren't high in fruits, vegetables, legumes and whole grains. Replace soda with sparkling water and try fruit for dessert instead of a cookie.
Diets high in saturated fat raise cholesterol levels, which in turn can lead to heart disease. This artery-clogging fat is present in butter, sour cream, mayo, fatty cuts of meat, coconut oil, and coconut milk. Try adding salsa to your baked potato instead of butter and sour cream.
Yes, trans fat is even worse for you than saturated fat. Luckily, the FDA is working with manufacturers to ban it from all foods. But until they do, avoid any food that contains a "hydrogenated" ingredient. Switch to natural nut butters to avoid a food high in trans fat.
30% of Americans suffer from hypertension. High-sodium diets encourage the body to retain more fluid, thereby increasing workload on the heart. The AHA recommends no more than 1,500 mg per day or 500mg per meal. Instead of reaching for the salt shaker, enhance the flavor of your food with salt-free herbs and spices.
Forks over Knives: The movie
Join us on Thursday April 24 at 6:30 in Adventist Medical Center Amphitheatre. The power of the fork in the prevention and treatment of many common killers was revealed in this wildly popular film. Join us as we revisit this life-changing film and spend a few minutes afterwards talking about the personal implications and opportunities. The event is FREE and popcorn will be provided. For reservations call 503.256.4000