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Heart-Healthy Foods That You Should Include In Your Diet

Update Date: Mar 01, 2016 10:36 AM EST

Treating cardiovascular diseases is a messy and uneasy affair as you are forced to deal with pricey drugs, invasive health testing, and costly surgical procedures.

Although the number of people dying from heart-related diseases has reduced over the years, it's still the topmost killer in the United States. Based on statistical records from the American Heart Association (AHA), nearly a million Americans are projected to suffer from heart failure according to a report by Huffington Post.

But many experts agree that most, if not all, heart-related conditions are basically lifestyle diseases except for rare genetic cases. Numerous studies have attested that cardiovascular illnesses can be prevented and reversed through a change in diet- avoiding foods that damage the heart and eating those that promote cardiovascular health.

So, what's the recommended heart-friendly diet?

A number of different foods have been recommended by analysts by grading each food's score according to Heart Health Index as reported by Beacon Transcript.

In a nutshell, a diet for a healthy heart includes the following elements: fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and healthy proteins. Also, people should stay away from too much sugar and saturated fats.

Below is a compilation of some selected heart-healthy foods according to AHA as mentioned in a WCVB report.

1. Oatmeal- contains soluble fiber and beta glucans that reduce cholesterol levels and leads to stable sugar levels.

2. Legumes- rich in fiber, protein, and vitamins & minerals including folate and iron that help bring down cholesterol levels.

3. Tomatoes- contain antioxidant lycopene, vitamin C, potassium, fiber, and low sugar as well salt.

4. Salmon- rich in Omega 3 which reduces heart inflammation and busts clogging in arteries.

5. Cauliflower- contains potassium which is considered as good for the heart.

6. Almonds- rich in antioxidant vitamin E, heart-healthy fats, and calcium & magnesium that help bring blood pressure down.

7. Olive Oil- contains polyphenols that protect various components of the heart as well as blood vessels.

Apart from observing a heart-healthy diet, it is equally wise to get enough exercise and avoid an undesirable decadent lifestyle.

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