Prevention of Heart Diseases Lies In Your Diet

2016-09-14
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In India, out of the estimated population of more than 1.27 billion, about 45 million people suffer from coronary artery disease. That is not it. A 2013 survey by Saffola Life concluded that over 70 per cent of the urban Indian population is at the risk acquiring a heart disease. This is mainly the result of unhealthy eating habits, physical inactivity, packed schedules and stress.

The aforesaid is frightening enough for us to start following a healthier diet and to say ‘No’ to unhealthy foods. Here is a realistic list of 10 foods that can be easily incorporated in your diet and can help prevent heart diseases.

 

1. Dark chocolate

Dark chocolates are excellent for health. Dark chocolates are known to fight heart diseases (including stroke) because of the presence of flavonoids which have protective effects on heart. This effect is however not observed in milk chocolates because of the difference in flavonoid content. A piece of dark (65-70% cocoa content) chocolate can replenish the antioxidants of the body. Furthermore, it’s delicious plus gives the added benefit of stress relief!

 

2. Citrus fruits

Consumption of high amounts of the flavonoids found in oranges and lemon lowers the risk of ischemic stroke (caused by a clot). These flavonoids neutralize the free radicals produced in body, thereby preventing from heart diseases. Citrus fruits are also high in vitamin C, which lowers risk of heart disease as well.

 

3. Nuts

This category of food includes almonds, peanuts, pistachios and walnuts, all of which contain vitamin E, which helps lower bad cholesterol. And some, like walnuts, are high in omega-3 fatty acids. These nuts, however high in fat, can prevent heart diseases (because of the good cholesterol) when consumed regularly in controlled amounts. We are not suggesting you to sit in front of the television with a packet of roasted almonds!

 

4. Legumes

Peas, beans (rajma), chickpeas are some common legumes in Indian households. Their inclusion in diet can be used against heart diseases by lowering the cholesterol levels. Rising cholesterol levels contributes majorly to heart diseases.

 

5. Extra-virgin olive oil

Olive oil is the healthiest fat around. Its mono saturated fat content has been shown to decrease LDL ‘bad’ cholesterol and increase HDL ‘good’ cholesterol. This greatly helps in the prevention of heart diseases. Extra virgin olive oil also prevents you from getting the “extra full” feeling after a meal. However, you should not consume this too in excess.

 

6. Green tea

Loaded with catechins and flavonoids, green tea is considered to be the healthiest beverage on the planet. The catechins in green tea dramatically prevent damage to cells, and hence to body. It dramatically decreases the risk of heart diseases, by keeping a check on cholesterol levels and providing nutrients and minerals to your body.

 

7. Flax seeds

Flax seeds are full of fibers and omega-3 fatty acids. The omega- 3 fatty acids have a number of effects on heart including reduction of blood pressure and normalizing the cardiac rhythm. Another effect is keeping a check on the bad cholesterol present in body. Flax seeds are available in roasted form. They can be munched upon anytime.

 

8. Pomegranate

Pomegranates have many medicinal and anti-inflammatory properties. Its consumption protects LDL cholesterol from being oxidized, thus acting like an antioxidant. Pomegranate is also known to prevent formation of atherosclerotic plaque and reduces blood pressure. The greatest advantage is the delicious taste this fruit has.

 

9. Garlic and onions

These natural blood thinners not only help prevent future diseases but also aid people already suffering from them. Onion and garlic help preventing clot formation in body, which is the main reason for initiation of heart diseases. They also lower the cholesterol levels in body plus raises the good cholesterol in body.

 

10. Oatmeal

Oatmeal can prove to be an excellent breakfast as it is filling (due to high amount of fiber) and heart-friendly (due to its unique antioxidants). It is significantly beneficial for Postmenopausal women and diabetic people who are prone cardiovascular diseases.

 

Your health is in your hands. You can govern a major portion of it. If that is the case, then why not strive to maintain your health as much as you can? We hope you have a healthy heart.

TAGGED IN : Heart Health Healthy Heart Forever Heart Tips

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