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Dietary doís and doníts for a healthy heart

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Old 09-07-2022, 04:14 AM
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Default Dietary doís and doníts for a healthy heart

  • DO focus on fruits and vegetables. Eating the recommended minimum of 5 servings per day, but vegetables and fruits of all kinds and colors should take centre stage in a heart-healthy diet. They’re rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that promote a healthy heart and body, plus they’re filling and low in calories, which can promote weight management. Fresh, frozen, dried, canned (without sugar syrups or added salt), raw, cooked and all fruits and vegetables are good for you until you are not diagnosed with diabetes or hypertension.
  • DON’T overdo it on juice and processed “fruit” snacks. The fruit filling in a breakfast pastry is mostly sugar—not a real serving of fruit. And while small amounts of 100% fruit juice can fit into a healthy diet, they’re also concentrated sources of sugar (naturally occurring) and calories are moderately high when compared to whole fruits, which also boast heart-healthy fiber while juice does not.
  • DO monitor your sodium intake. Our bodies need this mineral in much smaller quantities than we normally eat. To prevent high blood pressure and heart disease, a healthy sodium goal to strive for is no more than 1,500 milligrams per day. Keep in mind that sodium doesn’t just come from the table salt, processed foods, frozen foods, canned vegetables, common condiments (like ketchup), meats and cheeses that can be high in sodium, as can many restaurant dishes.
  • DON’T forget about added sugar. Most people know that sugar isn’t exactly a healthy food. It provides energy, but no real nutrition One study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that individuals who ate more sugar had lower levels of HDL “good” cholesterol and higher triglycerides—markers of increased heart disease risk. The American Heart Association recommends that women consume no more than 6 teaspoons of added sugars (about 100 calories) each day; that number becomes 9 teaspoons for men (150 calories). Just one 12-ounce can of cola has about 130 calories or eight teaspoons of sugar.
  • DO cut back on fat. To reduce your risk of heart disease, you need to choose the right types of fat, and ensure that you’re not eating too much fat. Most adults eat too much fat, regardless of the source, so cutting back on dietary fat is a good first step to a heart-healthy diet. That’s why choosing low-fat products, baking or broiling instead of deep frying and reducing or omitting the fats that recipes call for (like hydrogenated fat, shortening, lard ) are important first steps to get your fat intake in line.
  • DO avoid fats that elevate your cholesterol levels: trans fats (hydrogenated oils found in baked goods and margarine) and saturated fats (usually found in high-fat meats & dairy products, including beef, lamb, pork, poultry, beef fat, cream, lard, ****er, cheese and dairy products made with whole milk, as well as baked goods and fried foods that contain palm oil, palm kernel oil) every day, that’s about 41-58 grams of fat.
  • DON’T fear of all fats. Not all fats are bad for you. In fact, certain types of fat, such as monounsaturated fat and Omega-3s, actually promote heart health. Once you’ve gotten your fat intake in line, focus on making choices to meet your daily recommendations. Fats found in olive, soybean, nuts, canola oils, and seafood are good for the heart.
  • DO imbibe in moderation (if you drink). Research indicates that moderate alcohol intake has been associated with a decreased risk for certain cardiovascular diseases, particularly coronary heart disease. A moderate alcohol intake is defined as up to 1 drink per day for women and up to 2 drinks per day for men. To find out if a moderate alcohol intake is appropriate for you, talk to your doctor about your consumption of alcohol, your medical history, and any medications you use.
  • DON’T start drinking alcohol if you aren’t already a drinker. If you don’t drink now, don’t start. Other healthy habits like not smoking, eating right, getting regular exercise and maintaining a healthy weight can also help you reduce your risk of heart disease.
  • DO fill up on fiber A high-fibre diet can help reduce the risk of heart disease. Certain types of fibre may help lower LDL “bad” cholesterol. Adults should aim for 20-30 grams each day. To meet your daily requirement select a variety of unprocessed plant-based foods each day, including oats, whole-wheat bread/flour/cereal, fruits, vegetables and pulses.
  • DON’T forget about cholesterol. It is a waxy fat-like substance made in the liver and cells of animals. It is therefore found in animal products (meat, poultry, dairy and eggs), but not plant-sourced foods. A high intake of dietary cholesterol may cause heart disease. For the prevention of heart disease, limit your intake of dietary cholesterol to less than 300 milligrams each day. If you already have an elevated LDL cholesterol level or you are taking a cholesterol medication, the goal is even lower it to 200 milligrams daily. While it may seem like there are a lot of “rules” to follow to protect your heart, Focus on the foods that you know are good for you—whole grains, fruits and vegetables, low-fat dairy products, lean protein choices, and healthy fat and limit or avoid the types of foods that don’t do anything for your health (like food with empty calories, fried foods, sugar and sweets, high-fat meats and dairy products). When you focus on the good stuff and make healthful choices most of the time, you’ll be doing your body—and your heart—well.
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