What you eat can greatly influence your heart health.
It is important to know that some foods less heart-healthy contain a lot of fat and cholesterol and are full of sugar and calories.
These unhealthy elements can contribute to arterial plaque buildup, elevated blood pressure and high cholesterol.
The foods may also make you gain more weight can cause the body’s heart to work harder.
It’s why Michigan Medicine cardiologist Sharlene Day, M.D. serves fresh, home-cooked meals with lean proteins and vegetables whenever possible.
She shares how she eats every day to keep her heart healthy.
Breakfast: low-fat Greek yogurt, banana, granola with raspberries
People should to start the day with enough calories and protein to have energy to get through the morning, and this can prevent you from overeating later.
In the breakfast, bananas provide potassium, which helps reduce blood pressure, and raspberries are rich in polyphenols, micronutrients that are associated with a reduced risk of heart disease.
The yogurt is packed with protein to help curb appetite. And the low-sugar granola supplies fiber, iron, unsaturated fats and healthy calories.
Lunch: vegetable lasagna
If people have active workdays, it is okay to have starches and carbohydrates for much-needed energy. Cheese, applied lightly, is a blend of part-skim mozzarella and cottage cheese.
People can supply this dish with layers of zucchini, mushrooms and spinach, the latter of which packs a particularly strong punch.
Known to help lower blood pressure, spinach is rich in vitamins and nutrients.
Snack: packaged fruit snacks
Such sugared sustenance, while not necessarily nutritious, can be good for a little bit of energy before people workout after work.
Dinner: homemade poke bowls
People should add many veggies into their dinner.
Recently, the doctor and her family enjoyed a make-your-own poke (raw fish) bowl with fresh marinated tuna sashimi and sushi rice purchased at the grocery store.
A buffet spread of tofu, spinach, broccoli, mushrooms and sugar snap peas allowed everyone to dress their entrees as they wish.
Beyond that nutritional benefit of adding lots of vegetables, the raw tuna offers a substantial boost of omega-3 fatty acids to help reduce inflammation that can cause heart disease.
The fatty acid is also known to reduce triglycerides (a type of fat in your blood) and lower blood pressure.
Although traditional ice cream is a periodic indulgence for her, frozen yogurt or fresh fruit sorbet is a sensible sweet that can be enjoyed anytime.
The dessert tastes good and it’s not high in fat and not too high in calories.
The doctor suggests that when preparing meals every day, even typical indulgences such as pizza can be modified.
For example, whole-wheat dough, low-fat cheese and a do-it-yourself topping bar supply a satisfying alternative when the family cooks together.
Moderation is the key for heart-healthy eating. Don’t eat in excess and stay active to avoid a sedentary lifestyle
Source: Michigan Medicine
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