Heart is an important organ of the body. It is essential to maintain heart health for the overall health maintenance of the body. According to some of the renowned cardiologists from well-known heart hospitals in Hyderabad, keeping a watch on the food that you eat is necessary to keep yourselves away from heart related disorders. You can know more about Foods bad for the heart in this article.
Following a healthy diet reduces your risk for heart related diseases in several ways. This includes helping to lower high cholesterol, blood pressure, blood sugar and insulin levels. It also helps to prevent obesity and improves the functioning of your heart and blood vessels. Thus, what you eat has a deep impact on how your body functions.
What 3 Foods Cardiologists Say to Avoid?
- Processed Meats
Processed meats are the type of meats preserved using salts, nitrites, or other preservatives. They include sausage, salami, turkey, bologna, and chicken. According to certain observational studies, it was found that the worst types of meats for the heart are those that are processed. The excessive levels of salt and preservatives found in processed meats are a major part of the problem. 2 servings of processed meat are sufficient per week.
- Highly Refined and Processed Grains and Carbohydrates
Refined foods include white bread, white rice, sweets and sugars, etc. These food items are not good for the heart because high levels of processing remove many of the most healthful components in whole grains, such as dietary fiber, minerals, phytochemicals, and fatty acids. Additionally, high levels of processing damages the food’s natural structure. Consuming food made up of finely milled oats or grains produces much higher spikes in blood sugar than less-processed versions.
Processing also adds a lot of ingredients that are not too healthy. According to some research, fructose is metabolized differently than other sugars such that it increases the liver’s production of new fat. It represents about half of the sugar in sweeteners like high-fructose corn syrup or sucrose. Therefore, it is suggested to make such food items an occasional treat rather than a regular part of your diet. To know more, you may consult dietitians for diet and nutritional tips for healthy heart.
- Soft Drinks and Other Sugary Drinks
People are drinking more and more of their calories instead of eating them. Sugary drinks have similar types of ill-effects on the heart as highly refined and processed carbohydrates. Some researches shows that your body does not compute the calories you ingest in liquid form as in the case of solid foods. Therefore, if you add a soda to your meal, you are likely to add more calories to your food. Sugary drinks also enhances your chances of weight gain.
Apart from the drinks and foods bad for the heart as mentioned above, it is also suggested to abstain from alcohol. Alcohol is a blood thinner. Hence, if you have had a heart attack, it should be consumed in moderation.So, if you have been thinking about what foods are bad for your heart? You may keep all the above mentioned food items in mind.
Heart-Friendly Foods to Eat
A heart-healthy diet should consist of lots of fruits and vegetables. Also, lean meats, nuts, beans, and legumes, fish, whole grains, plant-based oils. These food items are all low in saturated fats and empty calories. So, you need to make sure your plate contains a variety of vegetables at every meal.
If you wish to follow a more structured eating plan, there are a few heart-healthy diets to consider such as:-
- The Mediterranean Diet:
This diet mainly focuses on healthy fats, fish, beans, and grains along with lots of fresh vegetables and fruit. Dairy and meat must be consumed on an occasional basis only. This type of diet also focuses on using plant-based oils, like olive oil, in place of butter. In case, you wish to add dairy products into your diet, make sure they have 1 percent fat or less. This will reduce your overall saturated fat consumption.
DASH known as Dietary approaches to stopping hypertension is another eating plan used to promote heart health by reducing your blood pressure. This diet also focuses on plant-based foods along with lean meats. In a DASH diet, you can also eat 2 to 3 servings of low-fat dairy per day.
- Plant-Based Eating:
Other than being scientifically proven to promote heart health, eating more plant-based foods is linked to a lower risk of cancer, stroke, type 2 diabetes. Consuming less amount of meat also means that you will be consuming less saturated fat and cholesterol.
Always remember that other than watching out on what you eat, it is also important to go for best cardio exercises you can do at home. This will ensure healthy heart and a healthy living. And, to know more details about the type of foods bad for the heart, you may check out with a nutritionist or heart health expert.