Tips for a Healthy Heart for 2021
Cut down on Alcohol
Cutting down on your alcohol levels for a healthy heart. People will have a ‘Dry January’ after the Christmas festivities. How about trying to cut down from February as well? Being aware of the amount you usually consume is the first step, take a look back at the previous few months.
Try to keep to the recommended alcohol limits to reduce the risk of serious problems with your health, including risks to your heart health.
Cut down on Salt
Read the labels of the food your buying, especially pre-made convenience foods. Understanding what’s in food and how it fits in with the rest of your diet will help you make healthier choices, contributing to your healthy heart.
Salt is linked to high blood pressure especially as you get older. When the pressure inside your blood vessels stays at a high level for a long time, it can damage your heart and blood vessels leading to a heart attack or stroke. About 70% of the salt we eat comes from processed foods, fast food, canteen and restaurant food. About 20% is added at home in cooking or at the table. And only 15% occurs naturally in food. Source – Irishheart.ie
Eat more Fibre
We all know that Fibre is great for digestion, but did you also know it can also adds to a healthy heart too? Higher intakes of dietary fibre, especially from cereal fibre and wholegrains, are associated with a lower risk of heart and circulatory disease, type 2 diabetes and some cancers.
The recommendation comes from a 2015 report on carbohydrates and health by the Scientific Committee on Nutrition, which advises government bodies. The current recommendation is that adults should eat 30g of fibre a day. Currently, average intakes are around 20g a day. Source – bhf.co.uk
Cut down Saturated Fat
Eating foods containing saturated fats raises the level of cholesterol in your blood. High levels of cholesterol in your blood increase your risk of heart disease and stroke.
Food containing high saturated fat:
- Fatty meats (such as beef, pork and lamb)
- Processed meat (such as sausages, burgers and bacon)
- Dairy products
You should replace foods high in saturated fats with foods high in monounsaturated and/or polyunsaturate fats. This means eating foods made with liquid vegetable oil but not tropical oils. It also means eating fish and nuts. You also might try to replace some of the meat you eat with beans or legumes. Source – heart.org