Heart healthy eating that includes the cardiac nutrition: 10 tips can help you live a longer, healthier life. Adopting this lifestyle will reduce your chances of having a premature heart attack. It is a proven fact that changing the way you eat significantly lowers your blood pressure in as little as two weeks.
- Shop smart. Buy lots of fresh fruits and vegetables loaded with lots of fiber and anti-oxidants. Buy no fat or low fat dairy products and egg whites instead of whole eggs. Buy fish or chicken instead of red meat. Limit bakery products and purchase whole grain breads. Look for the heart check mark on labels that meet the American Heart Associations criteria for good cardiac nutrition.
- Lower your sodium intake. Low salt or no salt products are best. Buy fresh or frozen vegetables instead of canned.
- Use the right fats and oils. Use vegetable oils when cooking that are low in saturated fats, like olive, canola, corn, sesame, soybean, safflower or sunflower oil. Avoid coconut, palm and palm kernel oils for good cardiac nutrition.
- Make substitutions. Avoid premixed seasoning packets they are high in salt. Use herbs in place of salt. Vinegar or citrus juice added just before eating will enhance the flavors. Try dry mustard for zest while cooking or mix with a little water to use as a condiment. Low fat yogurt or cottage cheese instead of heavy cream or sour cream. Use egg substitutes.
- Best meats to eat. Choose “choice” or “select” instead of “prime” when buying beef. Beef or pork labeled “loin” and “round” contain less fat. Light meat is leaner than dark meat in poultry. Eat fish twice a week and limit red meat to 3-4 times per week for good cardiac nutrition. Remove skins before eating and trim excess fat.
- Heart healthy cooking methods. Avoid frying when cooking. Stir-fry or roast, grill or broil with a rack to keep the meat out of the fat drippings. Baking in a covered dish to retain extra liquids. Saute with a non-stick pan or use a little broth or wine. Steaming vegetables will retain vitamins and flavor.
- Make the right menu choices when eating out. For good cardiac nutrition avoid cocktails, appetizers or bread and butter, sources of fat, sodium and extra calories. Ask for sauces, creams and butters on the side Use low fat dressings and avoid cheeses, pasta salads and dishes with whipped cream. Pass on “super-sizing” your meal. Opt for a plain baked potato instead of French fries. Go for grilled chicken instead of fried. Ask for whole grain bread choices for added fiber.
- Healthy snacking. Eat fresh fruits and vegetables instead of chips or crackers. Drink lots of water. Eat unsalted nuts, especially sunflower seeds, almonds or walnuts. Have some low fat yogurt instead of ice cream.
- Understanding Labels. Note the serving size, how many servings in a package and keep your total daily fat under 56-78 g per day and cholesterol less than 300 mg. Labels are based on 2,000 calories per day diet. Labels that indicate 0 g of trans fat is actually less than 0.5 g of trans fat per serving.
- DASH Diet. (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension). It’s actually a lifestyle for good cardiac nutrition and has been proven to significantly lower blood pressure in two weeks. Benefits are lower blood pressure, increased vitamin and minerals, and decreased consumption of fat and saturated fat.
Heart disease and obesity have been linked. Sixty-seven percent of Americans are overweight. Don’t be a statistic, adopting a healthier diet following these good cardiac nutrition 10 tips to help you lose weight and lower your chances of a premature heart attack.