Heart diseases are common in the modern world and an unhealthy lifestyle must be blamed here. Irregular exercise, ingestion of junk food and lack of a balanced diet leads to problems associated with the heart. However, experts suggest that the intake of certain superfoods can considerably improve your heart health naturally. A balanced diet with regular intake of foods packed with vitamins, minerals, essential nutrients and fiber is key to a healthy body.
Let’s Take A Look at The Top 10 Superfoods That Can Boost Heart Health.
Fish is a very good source of Omega 3 fatty acids which is believed to reduce the risk of heart diseases. Oily fish such as salmon, sardine or mackerel can be very good choices if you are looking to keep your heart in good shape. The fatty acids from the fish lowers triglyceride levels and prevents blood clots that can choke the arteries. Therefore, try to include 2 to 3 servings of fish in your weekly diet plan.
Packed with antioxidants, blueberries are excellent for the heart. The antioxidants present in it has the capacity to neutralize free radicals that can lead to various disease. It also prevents LDL cholesterol build-up and thereby, effectively reduces the chances of stroke. It is therefore, recommended to eat a cup of fresh or dried blueberries every day.
3. Whole Grains:
Whole grains such as wheat, oatmeal, barley, millet, quinoa and a wide range of cereals are ideal for improving heart health. The fiber obtained from these whole grains lowers cholesterol and helps to maintain a healthy body weight. Besides, it keeps you full for longer, preventing the intake of junk food at regular intervals. Whole grains are also very efficient in controlling diabetes which is a major contributor of cardiovascular problems.
4. Dark Green Leafy Vegetables:
Dark green leafy vegetables such as spinach, kale or even broccoli can work wonders for the heart. These are powerhouses of essential nutrients, vitamins and minerals. It is also rich in antioxidants that are capable of controlling the damage caused by free radicals. Folic acid present in dark green veggies such as spinach lowers the level of an amino acid, homocysteine, which poses great risks for the heart.
Oranges are rich in pectin, a substance that prevents the absorption of cholesterol in the body. It also has the capacity to lower blood pressure and minimizes the risk of congestive heart failure. Oranges are also a great source of potassium which is known to effectively absorb salt from our body and excessive salt concentration in our body is often associated with high blood pressure. So, eat your oranges to keep your heart healthy.
6. Soy Protein:
An excellent source of vitamins, proteins, minerals and Omega 3 fatty acid, soy products such as soy milk or tofu can be included in your diet to improve heart health. It reduces LDL cholesterol levels and keeps cardiovascular disease at bay. It can be used in regular cooking and can be taken as a very good alternative for meat.
7. Olive Oil:
Olive oil has a very high concentration of monounsaturated fatty acids or MUFAs. It is known to reduce the risk of heart diseases and helps to keep cholesterol levels in check. It can be used as an alternative for saturated and trans fats which are extremely harmful for the cardiovascular system. Besides, it is rich in antioxidants and helps to neutralize free radicals.
Almonds, walnuts, pecans and pine nuts are packed with unsaturated fats which help to lower cholesterol levels. It prevents plaque formation on the blood vessels, thereby preventing the chances of heart disease. It is also a great source of Vitamin E, fiber and Omega 3 fatty acids which are considered extremely healthy for the heart.
Flaxseed is a very healthy ingredient packed with fibers and Omega 3 fatty acids. The fiber in these seeds lower LDL cholesterol and check heart diseases considerably. It also keeps you full for longer and therefore, prevents overeating. You can either include it in your salads or use it with your cereals. Flaxseed oil can also be used for salad dressings and cooking.
Garlic acts as a magical ingredient for heart ailments. It lowers cholesterol, maintains normal blood pressure and helps to prevent heart attacks. The substances found in garlic prevents plaque formation in the arteries and therefore, prevents constriction of arteries and blood vessels.
11. Kidney Beans:
One of the healthiest foods, kidney beans are protein rich, provides fiber to the body and is packed with vitamins. These beans are also cholesterol free and therefore, people complaining about heart problems must include this in their diet. Other legumes such as lentils, garbanzo beans or chickpeas can also be used for the same purpose as kidney beans.