Love your heart and eat the healthy way- 10 tips for you to remember
A healthy diet may help reduce your blood cholesterol levels and lower blood pressure but this alone is not enough, it's about making healthy lifestyle habits such as stopping smoking, being more active and drinking less alcohol. Making small changes three at a time towards improving you’re eating and lifestyle can make a difference to your heart.
So here are some evidence based 10 tips for you to start your heart pumping the healthy way:
Eat plenty of fruit and vegetables- aim at least 5 portions per day. If you have been following my blogs you will know how much a portion is by now.
Eat 1-2 portions of oily fish per week e.g salmon, herrings, mackerel, sardines, pilchards , kippers, trout and fresh tuna or vegetarian sources can be green leafy vegetables e. g spinach and broccoli, soya or canola or rapeseed oils, walnuts, flaxseed and their oils or foods fortified in omega 3 fats
Plant stenols and sterols found in fortified fat spreads, milks and yoghurts with your meals and along with a low saturated fats diet may lower your blood cholesterol
Have more pulses and lentils which are known for their filling and are slow releasing and thought to be good for your heart
Use mono unsaturated spreads from olive oil and rapeseed oil and limit high fat dairy foods e.g. full fat milk, butter, cream and yoghurts. Butter, lard, ghee, suet, dripping as well as processed foods like burgers, sausages, pastry, pies, cakes, biscuits and creamy puddings are high in saturated fats which has been harmful for your heart. Polyunsaturated oils found in sunflower, corn oil, nuts and seeds are another fat that has been known to reduce the harmful effects of high blood cholesterol.
Have wholegrain bread, cereals, oats, brown rice ,barley, buckwheat ,quinoa and pasta to help lower your heart disease risk
Swap high sugary snacks and drinks e. g cakes ,sweet biscuits chocolates, sweet ice-cream, sweet puddings , custards and sweet fizzy drinks with water or sugar free squash and fresh fruit, fruit loaf, dried fruit as toppings, nuts, seeds, light yoghurts, sugar free low-fat custards, high fibre low sugar cereals or plain biscuit.
Keep your salt intake low from less table salt, processed and take away foods, salty snacks e. g crisps and salted nuts, canned and packet soups and sauces. Try herbs spices as alternative.
Limit alcohol to 1-2 units per day and have alcohol free days in a week.
If you are overweight try and lose weight.
The more changes you make the greater the benefit to your heart. A happy heart is a healthy heart so also introduce activity and have relaxing times. A dietitian can provide you with your personal food guide based on your needs at your goals your pace.
For specialised Diet and Nutrition advice seek the advice of a Professional Dietitian and Nutritionist Tabby kabeer