A Healthy You: Try the Foods of Love and Health

If you want to keep your heart beating strong, try incorporating more heart-healthy foods into your diet. The average human heart beats 2.5 billion times. Even at rest, the heart muscles work twice as hard as the leg muscles of a person running.

Chocolate is a heart-healthy food. Dark chocolate, 70 percent or higher cocoa content is an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and may help increase HDL and low LDL. Moderation is the key and aim for 1-2 squares per day.

Oatmeal is a great source of soluble fiber which helps eliminate excess cholesterol from your body. Beans, whole grains and nuts also help eliminate excess cholesterol. Aim to eat at least two ½-cup servings of fiber rich foods.

Walnuts and Almonds both contain Omega-3 fatty acids, Vitamin E, magnesium, fiber and healthy fats.

Salmon and tuna are excellent sources of Omega-3 fatty acids, which may help prevent heart disease. Aim for eating Omega-3 rich fish twice a week.

Flaxseeds and chia seeds are a plant source of oOmega-3 fatty acids and also contain fiber.

Blueberries and strawberries are high in Vitamin C and may help with inflammation and may help keep blood pressure down.

So how about a nice bowl of oatmeal, with flaxseeds, blueberries and walnuts for breakfast? That’s heart smart.

A Healthy You is a regular column about nutrition, healthy living and cancer care. It is written by Cindy Gates, RD and LD and the Cancer Center’s Oncology dietitian, herbalist and Certified Wellness Coach.

Post by Robin McGinty

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