5 Simple Steps to a Heart Healthy Diet

Ready to step up to a diet rich in the healthy nutrients your heart craves? The experts recommend staring here: Eat a diet rich in vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and fiber. Eat fish at least twice a week. Limit how much saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol you eat. Only 30% of your daily calories should come from fat, with very little of that from s…aturated fats. Select fat-free, 1% fat, and low-fat dairy products. Cut back on foods containing partially hydrogenated vegetable oils to reduce trans fat in your diet. Limit your salt intake. One way to make sure that your diet is rich in fruits, vegetables, and fiber, and low in saturated fats, is to divide your plate at each meal: half vegetables, 1/4 high-quality protein (like legumes — terrific sources of protein and great for a healthy heart!), and 1/4 for fish or a very lean meat. And remember, you should get your nutrients from foods themselves, the antioxidants and other heart-healthy goodies found in foods like blueberries, beans, and artichokes don’t pack the same punch when they’re not in food form. And avoid fad diets, advises Mosca. “Almost every one may result in short-term weight loss but leave you weighing even more a year later, and preventing weight gain is one of the best ways to prevent developing heart disease risk factors.”
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