Earlier it was believed that heart disease was a matter of concern only for the Late 60’s but with changing lifestyle and eating pattern Heart diseases have become very common among middle age and young generation. Along with a healthy lifestyle with Exercise, workouts and Meditation each one of us should know foods which should be consumed for a healthy heart and also foods which should be avoided to maintain a good Cardiac health. The foods rich in HDL or High density lipids are said to be Heart friendly foods whereas foods containing LDL (Low density lipids) or VLDL (Very low density Lipids) are considered as enemies of the Heart.
Healthy Foods for a Healthy Heart
Foods rich in fiber
Fruits and Vegetables rich in fibre should be consumed. Whole grains like ragi and Jowar are good source of fibre, Vitamins and minerals. Oats are also rich in fiber, which helps to bind bile acids and remove them from the body. Fiber foods helps to lower cholestrol and are beneficial for heart.
Omega 3 fatty acids
These are essential fatty acids helpful in strenthening heart muscles and are very beneficial for a healthy Heart.Sources of Omega 3 fatty acids are fishes like Tuna and Salmon, sesame seeds, flax seeds, Olive oil, Whole grain, Garlic etc.
Foods like kidney bean, lentils etc are very good source of protein and has no cholestrol content. It can be substituted for animal protein.
A handful of nuts daily is beneficial to maintain a good circulatory system. It prevent plaque deposition or inflammation around arteries.
For Non Vegetarians
Skinless chicken breasts and fishes and skimmed milk are better options to the Non Vegetarians. This way they can enjoy taste and health at the same time.
Avoid Trans Fat
Foods like beef, lamb, full fat dairy products are rich in trans fat. Trans fat increases bad cholestrol and ups the risk of Heart diseases. Cookies, pizzas, chips, fried foods, cakes, french fries etc are also trans fat containing foods.
Limit use of Salt and Sugar
The American Heart Association recommends consuming less than 1,500 mg of sodium in a day. High Sodium containing foods may raise the blood Pressure which inturn harms the heart. High Sugar may up the risk of Diabetes and increase bad cholestrol. Fizzy drinks or sugary drinks should be avoided to keep a sound heart.
Always maintain your blood reports with in following range :
Total cholesterol—less than 200 mg/dL
LDL “bad” cholesterol—less than 100 mg/dL for most people
HDL “good” cholesterol—50 mg/dL or higher
Triglycerides—less than 140 mg/dL
Blood pressure—less than 130/80 mmHg
Fasting glucose—less than 98mg/dL
World Heart Day observed on September 29th every year aims in prevention and protection of Cardiovascular diseases. Not only men, women and children should also regulate their eating habits as they are too often prone to Heart problems according to latest report. Eat Right and Stay Healthy. Along with healthy food, one should exercise regularly, avoid stress, avoid smoking and alcohol to achieve a healthy Cardiovascular System.