A strong heart is very important to your overall health. The heart is an organ that is also an amazing muscle. It is the source of life and provides oxygen to the body. It acts as a pump that supplies blood to the body by adjusting the flow and pressure of the blood volume. The leading cause of death in the US is heart disease. 40% of deaths of people between 65 and 74 years are due to heart disease. Heart disease costs the government more than 300 billion a year.
The heart can beat more than 100,000 times a day. It can pump more than 1800 gallons of blood through blood vessels, which if stretched can exceed 60,000 miles. Those are truly amazing facts about the miraculous work our hearts do for us on a daily basis. As we age, our hearts will compensate by adapting to age. It will compensate for the build-up of arterial plaque by working harder to pass blood through vessels that are now narrower than when we were younger. This extra work on behalf of the heart can have serious health effects. For example, it can raise blood pressure. However, by doing so, we become more susceptible to heart problems and other diseases. There are certain foods that are very helpful for good heart health. We need to eat the right foods to protect this precious organ in order to allow it to function at its maximum efficiency.
Foods for heart health: There are foods that are very healthy to incorporate into your diet to protect the health of your heart. Always strive to eat whole foods and avoid eating processed foods as much as possible. When shopping at the grocery store, a good rule of thumb is to shop in the outside aisles. These are the areas that have fresh produce, meat, and seafood. The interior aisles of the store store all canned and processed foods.
Berries: Berries are very healthy for the heart. Blueberries in particular are. Dark blue fruits contain the antioxidant known as “anthocyanin”, which is very good for the cardiovascular system. In addition, blueberries contain vitamin C and fiber.
Cayenne pepper: This powerful herb contains capsaicin. It is known as the “king of herbs” as it has numerous health benefits. It is a source of vitamin A. Cayenne pepper is beneficial for the heart because it can increase blood flow. Increased blood flow can help maintain normal blood pressure levels, which will protect your heart from damage. There has been some research that suggests that cayenne pepper can also lower cholesterol levels and decrease inflammation. Inflammation is very dangerous because it can lead to the build-up of arterial plaque. You can enjoy cayenne pepper as a flavorful spice in many dishes and.
Oatmeal: Oatmeal is a nutritious and delicious way to start your day. They are high in fiber, vitamins and minerals. They are also rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Oatmeal has been shown to lower bad or LDL cholesterol levels and help keep the arteries of the heart clean. A great heart-healthy breakfast could be a bowl of hot oatmeal with blueberries or bananas. Always try to eat the steel cut variety of oatmeal over any instant oatmeal as it has more fiber.
Spinach: One of the most nutritious green vegetables, spinach has a good reputation for heart health. Spinach is rich in vitamins and minerals that include folate, nitrate, calcium, and potassium. More importantly, it contains CoQ10, which is vital for the health of the heart and muscles of the human body. Spinach is one of only two plants that actually contains CoQ10.
Omega-3 fatty acids: Omega-3 fatty acids are very important for heart health. There is much discussion about the importance of fruits and vegetables for overall health. Omega-3 fatty acids play a vital role in heart health. They are a polyunsaturated fat that can help lower triglycerides and lower blood pressure. They help increase the levels of good cholesterol, known as HDL, and also have anti-inflammatory benefits. Some of the best sources come from cold-water fish like salmon and tuna. There are also vegetable oils like flaxseed and canola that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. You should aim for 2-3 servings of cold water fish a week for heart health benefits. Salmon – This is an ideal fish in many ways. Fatty fish like salmon will help strengthen your immune system with all of its heart health benefits.
Clearly, the health of your heart is extremely important. You have many options when it comes to your diet and nutrition. By choosing wisely and eating heart-friendly and nutritious foods, you can reduce your risk of heart disease. Remember that whenever you begin any diet or lifestyle change, always consult with a medical professional, especially if you are taking prescription medications or suffering from any illness or disease.