There are various ways that you can improve your heart health, such as by staying active and avoiding smoking. One other thing that you might want to look into if you want to keep your ticker healthy is to change the way that you eat. Your diet can have a big impact on your cardiovascular health, but luckily, following these tips can help you enjoy a more heart healthy diet.
1. Reduce Your Salt Intake
Even though salt is sometimes great for bringing out the flavor in your favorite foods, eating too much sodium can cause your blood pressure to rise and can be bad for your heart. One great step that you can take toward eating a more heart healthy diet is to reduce your sodium intake. A lot of processed foods are packed with sodium, so it's wise to read the labels and to eat these foods sparingly. Instead, try preparing food from scratch so that you can control your sodium intake; you might find that homemade food tastes better and is cheaper along with being healthier as well. When using salt, use it sparingly, and consider flavoring your foods with other seasonings, such as pepper or garlic powder.
2. Be Cautious About Trans Fats and Saturated Fat
Not all fat is actually bad for you; for example, olive oil is generally considered to be a healthy fat when consumed in moderation. However, trans fats can cause high cholesterol, which can have an impact on your overall heart health. Once again, avoiding processed foods and making food from scratch can help. Additionally, it's wise to watch the labels of the foods that you eat.
Saturated fats can be found in red meat, butter and other products. It does not have to be avoided, but the American Heart Association does suggest that you consume saturated fats in moderation if you'd like to follow a heart healthy diet.
3. Fill Up on Healthy Foods
Following a heart healthy diet does not mean that you have to starve yourself. Instead, it means that you should fill up on healthy foods. Lean proteins like lean beef and chicken are good for you, as is fish. Additionally, your diet should be packed with plenty of vegetables, fruits and beans. If you fill up on these healthy foods, you can enjoy your other favorite foods in moderation and maintain an overall healthy diet for your heart and the rest of your body. Doing so can also help you maintain a healthy weight as well.