Much attention is paid to the heart on Valentine’s Day, but maybe romance shouldn’t be the sole focus. Keeping the heart healthy is the best way to keep love alive — and diet is key to heart health. Rachel Johnson, PhD, RD, professor of nutrition at University of Vermont and chair of the American Heart Association Nutrition Committee, shares the five most important foods to have in your diet’s rotation — plus the two most important to skip.
Tag: heart health
News broke yesterday regarding new guidelines for prescribing statin medications. Doctors are being urged to use a revised set of criteria, established by the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology, to determine who should be prescribed cholesterol lowering medications.
Eating for Heart Health
The new guidelines also include recommendations for following a “healthy lifestyle” that entails exercising, not smoking and following a heart-healthy diet. In accordance with the American Heart Association paper, the American College of Cardiology recently released a Guideline on Lifestyle Management to Reduce Cardiovascular Risk. Here is a summary of the dietary guidelines they lay out to help lower LDL (“bad”) cholesterol.
There’s a lot more to heart health than just cutting out junk food. Get to know which foods are good for your heart and share the love with friends and family.
Love Your Heart
Eating for a healthy heart means keeping weight, blood pressure and cholesterol in check. This means cutting back on certain foods and making sure you’re getting enough of others.
Limit These Foods
Saturated Fats – Butter, high-fat meats, fried foods and full-fat dairy products are just some of the places you’ll find saturated fats. The American Heart Association recommends no more than 7 percent of calories should come from these artery cloggers. That’s about 16 grams on a 2,000-calorie diet.
Trans Fats – Processed foods use trans fats to improve texture and increase shelf life but they’re even worse for your heart than saturated fats. Foods with trans fat will have hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils listed on food labels.
Cholesterol – Both dietary cholesterol and saturated fat can increase LDL (“bad”) cholesterol. Keep intake from animal-based foods to less than 300 milligrams a day.
High Sodium Foods - High-sodium foods like salty snacks, restaurant and processed foods can aggravate blood pressure. Keep your intake below 2300 milligrams per day (or 1500 milligrams if you’ve already been diagnosed with high blood pressure).
You probably know to lay off the fried foods and other sources of artery-clogging fats to keep your heart happy, but what about the foods you should be eating to keep it healthy? In honor of Heart Health Month, here’s our top 10 list.
Please your heart and your taste buds! The right diet choices can play a big role in reducing your risk for heart disease. In honor of American Heart Month this February, we’re sharing our top 25 recipes that feature heart-healthy ingredients.