HEART HEALTHY EATING

Why take the time to eat heart healthy food?

When you have a diagnosis of heart disease (which is around 50 percent of American adults), one way to have some control over your health is by eating the right foods (as we all should!). Three goals of a heart healthy diet are:

Limiting unhealthy fat (keep arteries clear)

Limiting sodium (not increase blood pressure)

Maintaining healthy glucose levels (prevent blood sugar spikes)

How to make eating heart healthy food positive:

I have always hated the idea of “going on a diet”. After attending a lecture on healthy eating during a hospital internship in PT school, my philosophy about healthy food flipped from negative to positive! I decided to make it a lifestyle, not a short term commitment. The dietician at my lecture taught us to focus on eating as many natural healthy items throughout your day as you can. Have you tried to eat 8 servings of fruit and vegetables a day? It is hard!

“A heart healthy diet is a great way to flip the script and be positive about food!”

Eating healthy food is good medicine.

I love the idea that food is a natural medication for our body. There are many foods that set us up for feeling good, and promote the systems of our body to work well: heart, brain, immune system, digestive system, etc. Food is medicine! However, there are certain foods that can interact with medication, so always research your medication precautions. Much research has been done to discover “heart healthy” foods that improve HDL (good cholesterol), lower LDL (bad cholesterol), limit the plaque build up in arteries, lower blood pressure, and keep our glucose level stable.

The following recipe ideas are combinations of these heart healthy foods that research has found to assist our systems for these benefits. A heart healthy diet is a great way to flip the script and be positive about food! If we set goals to make sure we are eating enough natural healthy foods, the rest will usually fall into place, as the “healthy foods” tend to be full of fiber, and help us to feel full and satisfied.

All of these dishes have links with recipes and nutrition information. They are all made with heart healthy ingredients. <3

SPINACH SALAD WITH WALNUTS AND STRAWBERRIES

SALMON WITH ONION, GARLIC, PEPPERS AND OLIVE OIL

FRESH TOMATOES WITH BEANS,GARLIC, AND OLIVE OIL

One last thing… If we are going to eat healthy, we have to shop healthy!

How about flipping the script and using the positive concept of getting as many healthy foods into your daily diet by getting as many healthy foods into your shopping bag as you can? Here is a list of heart healthy foods- to print out and use to set goals for positive shopping. Check out my PREMIUM RESOURCES PAGE for a handout you can put on your fridge for keeping track of weekly positive eating, as well as many other healthy living handouts!

Comment and let me know what healthy foods you typically eat. Do you have any go-to recipes that you love? I would love to hear your suggestions! Subscribe to the blog for weekly emails, tips and information for senior health and senior caregiving.

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