10 Foods That Help Fight Heart Disease
Have we all been trying to create and keep our positive New Year’s Resolutions? Well let’s take that positive energy and apply it to our diet. Sometimes we focus so much on what we shouldn’t eat that we start to think that we need to avoid anything that tastes good. Instead of focusing on avoiding gravy, pizza, hot dogs and the like; how about trying to add some of the following heart healthy foods INTO your diet:
- Flaxseed: The omega-3s that are found in flaxseed can help reduce inflammation, lower triglycerides and increase “healthy” HDL cholesterol. Add some to your muffins, yogurt or cereal.
- Salmon: The same can be said for the omega-3s found in salmon and other fatty fish, such as mackerel, tuna and lake trout. Try to eat two to three servings of this fish each week.
- Whole Grains: Whole grains are rich in fiber and good sources of vitamins and minerals. Try something new like quinoa, brown rice, barley or whole wheat noodles. Try to make at least half of the grains you eat whole grains.
- Soybeans: Soy proteins contain isoflavones and vitamin E. When substituted for animal fats they can lower total cholesterol and triglycerides. For a pick-me-up snack in the afternoon try a handful of roasted soy nuts or add some to your salad.
- Tea: Black or green tea contains phytochemicals and antioxidants that may help lower cholesterol and protect LDL from oxidation. Relax with a cup of tea while you read the newspaper or a favorite magazine.
- Berries: Raspberries, blueberries, cranberries and other brightly-colored fruits are good sources of antioxidants. Add them to your cereal, muffins or salad for a tasty, healthy addition.
- Spinach: Dark green, leafy vegetables are also good sources of phytochemicals, vitamins, minerals and fiber. Add some greens to your salad, sandwich or entrée for a low-calorie, high-nutrient boost.
- Broccoli: Dark green, leafy vegetables are good, but so are other dark green and brightly colored vegetables such as broccoli, squash, sweet potatoes and peppers. Be liberal in adding these to your meals throughout the week.
- Dried beans: Cooked beans and lentils are good sources of soluble fiber as well as high in protein. They may also help lower cholesterol and LDLs. Try to incorporate two to three servings per week.
- Olive oil: Olive and canola oil, as well as some seeds and nuts, are good sources of mono-unsaturated fats. Add some almonds to your salad or have a small handful of nuts for a snack at bedtime.