Improve your heart’s condition by incorporating these foods into your diet.
February may be associated with all things Valentine’s, red, and heart-related, but did you know that it’s also National Heart Month? We’re not talking about perfect red hearts on cards to send to your loved one this month. We’re talking about your old ticker that keeps you going. Your heart is incredibly important to consider, especially since heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women in the west. Fortunately, you can help to prevent heart conditions through your diet and regularly exercising. To make the most of National Heart Month and commit to bettering your heart, load up on these heart-healthy foods.
It’s no secret that whole grains are a healthier choice than processed and refined grains. Whole grains are rich in antioxidants, phytoestrogens, and phytosterols – all of which protect against heart disease. They are also especially high in soluble fiber, which helps to lower cholesterol.
Nuts are packed full of vitamins, minerals, and heart-healthy monounsaturated fats. A handful of healthy nuts (i.e. unsalted) such as almonds or walnuts will satisfy your hunger and help your heart.
Kidney beans, black beans, and a variety of other beans are great for your heart because they are high in fiber, B-vitamins, minerals, and more. Whip up a chili with beans this National Heart Month!
Broccoli is packed with antioxidant vitamins A and C. They are also loaded with phytochemicals, known to have antioxidant properties.
Cocoa is rich in flavonoids, plant nutrients that help repair cell damage. Flavanols—cocoa’s main kind of flavonoid—help lower blood pressure, promote proper blood clotting and boost blood flow to the brain and heart. Keep in mind one or two squares is all it takes to do the trick!