What You Need to Know About Heart Healthy Eating

One of the most effective ways to prevent heart disease is by changing your diet to reduce your intake of saturated fats and expand the profile of nutrients you consume. You may be surprised how easy it is to start eating a more heart-friendly diet , as you do not have to give up all the foods you love to be healthy. Below is a look at the basics of heart-smart eating to help guide your decisions as you make changes in your diet.

Fresh vegetables and fruit

Not All Fats are Alike
You may think of fats as all bad, but there are actually some types of fat that you should eat more often. Fat is part of a balanced diet, but you need to choose fats wisely. Animal fats such as butter and fatty cuts of meat will have negative effects, but foods like olive oil, avocados, and nuts have the right fats to reduce inflammation and boost your circulation.

Fruits and Veggies are Best Enjoyed Fresh
The best way to get more fruits and vegetables into your diet is by buying them fresh and cooking them yourself. Canned and frozen varieties can be a suitable alternative, but you will want to check for added sugars and preservatives. The fruits and vegetables you should eat most often are those that have dark, rich colors. These include kale, blueberries, and sweet potatoes.

Substitutions can Make a Big Impact
When you make some of your favorite recipes, you can dramatically change the nutritional content by using some simple substitutions . Instead of full-fat milk, you might use low-fat varieties or alternatives like soy milk. Egg whites can take the place of whole eggs in nearly any baked recipe, and whole wheat flour is a great alternative to regular white flour.

For more guidance on heart-healthy eating for American Heart Month, visit Los Robles Hospital & Medical Center in Thousand Oaks. You can learn more by visiting our website or by calling our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (805) 497-2727.