Top 10 Heart Healthy Foods
Smart choices for a ProHeart diet
No single food can work miracles or cure disease, but eating healthy can make a big difference in your heart health, and how you look and feel.
Keep it natural and bright
Two simple tips for eating heart healthy are: 1) eat whole foods, and 2) eat brightly colored foods. Whole foods—foods in their natural, unprocessed state—provide the healthiest bang for your bite. Bright foods contain carotenoids, antioxidants with heart-protective qualities—so eat your colors!
- Whole grains (bread, cereal, oatmeal, brown rice) are rich in omega 3 fatty acids, minerals and soluble fiber, and they’re easy to work into your meals.
- Wild caught salmon always tops the list for its omega-3s. Serve it with brown rice and broccoli for a balanced heart-healthy meal.
- Nuts (almonds, walnuts, pecans) are protein-packed and full of omega-3s, too—add them to yogurt of green salads.
- Dark leafy greens (spinach, kale, collard greens, Swiss chard): Ditch the iceberg lettuce and try these greens on sandwiches and as bases for salads.
- Broccoli is low cholesterol, high fiber, and chock full of antioxidants. Simply steam it lightly and add salt, pepper, butter and lemon to taste.
- Berries (blueberries, raspberries, and strawberries) are winners in the antioxidant class, and dried and frozen berries still provide these benefits.
- Beans (pintos, garbanzos, lentils, kidney beans, and chickpeas). There are so many ways to prepare protein-packed heart-healthy beans—from salads to chili and soups.
- Avocados can help fight plaque buildup by helping to lower bad cholesterol, as long as you eat them in moderation. Plus, they’re great on sandwiches.
- Apples need no more prep than a wash, because the peel contains loads of antioxidants. And then there’s all the fiber, which sweeps out bad cholesterol.
- Green tea contains a large amount of antioxidants called polyphenols. Polyphenols, along with other antioxidants, can help fight damaging compounds in the body called free radicals.