Maintaining good heart health is essential for leading a long and healthy life. The heart is one of the most critical organs in the body, and any problem in its functioning can lead to various health issues. With the right lifestyle choices, you can promote optimal heart health, and maintain healthy cholesterol and blood pressure levels.
In this blog post, we will discuss some of the best foods and supplements for heart health. We will also provide tips on how to incorporate these foods and supplements into your routine safely.
- Why Is Heart Health Important?
- Foods For Heart Health
- Supplements For Heart Health
- Lifestyle Tips For A Healthy Heart
- Talk To Your Doctor
- Take Home Message
Why Is Heart Health Important?
Maintaining good heart health is crucial for leading a healthy life. The heart is a vital organ that pumps blood throughout the body, supplying oxygen and nutrients to every cell and tissue. It plays a crucial role in maintaining the body’s functions, including the immune system, metabolism, and hormone production.
Sustaining good heart health helps reduce the risk of heart conditions and other health complications. However, it can also support with improving blood circulation, reducing risk of high blood pressure, improving energy levels, and maintaining cognitive health.
Therefore, taking steps towards maintaining a healthy heart can not only help you live a longer life but also improve your quality of life.
Foods For Heart Health
Making changes to diet and lifestyle are the first steps to improving heart health. This can help support healthy cholesterol, blood lipid levels and blood glucose levels, to maintain a healthy heart.
There are many foods that are beneficial for heart health, including:
- Leafy greens: Leafy greens such as spinach, kale, and collard greens are rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that can help support heart health. They are also low in calories and fat.
- Berries: Berries are loaded with antioxidants that can help support a healthy heart. They are also a good source of fibre and vitamin C, which contributes to the normal function of blood vessels (1). Some of the best options include blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries.
- Fatty fish: Fatty fish such as salmon, tuna, and sardines are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids can help lower cholesterol levels, reduce inflammation, and improve heart function (2).
- Wholegrains: Whole grains such as oats, quinoa, and brown rice are rich in fibre, vitamins, and minerals that can help promote heart health. Fibre can also help lower cholesterol levels (3).
- Nuts: Nuts such as almonds, walnuts, and pistachios are rich in fibre and antioxidants that can help promote a healthy heart. Nuts are also a good source of healthy fats, which can help lower cholesterol levels (2).
- Legumes: Legumes such as chickpeas, lentils, and beans are rich in fibre and protein, which can help lower cholesterol, blood lipid and glucose levels, and reduce the risk of heart conditions (3).
- Avocado: Avocado is rich in monounsaturated fats, which can help lower cholesterol levels, keep arteries healthy, and support general heart health (4).
- Tomatoes: Tomatoes are rich in lycopene, a carotenoid antioxidant that can help reduce inflammation and support a healthy heart and cardiovascular system (5).
- Garlic: Garlic contains the antioxidant allicin, which may reduce blood cholesterol, blood pressure levels and maintain heart health (6).
- Dark chocolate: Dark chocolate is rich in flavonoids, which can help lower blood pressure, maintain healthy veins, and support a healthy heart (7). However, it should be consumed in moderation due to its high calorie and sugar content, which may have the opposite effect on heart health when overconsumed.
Supplements For Heart Health
There are many different supplements that are marketed for heart health. However, it’s important to note that supplements should never replace a healthy diet and lifestyle. Supplements work well in conjunction with a healthy, balanced diet to reduce the risk of nutritional shortfalls.
If you’re concerned about your heart health, it’s always a good idea to speak with your doctor first before starting any supplements.
Here are eight supplements that are associated with heart health:
Omega-3 fatty acids are a type of polyunsaturated fat that is found in fish oil. Omega-3 fatty acids can help lower your cholesterol levels, reduce your risk of heart conditions, and improve your heart function (2).