Heart disease is the #1 leading cause of death in the Unites States. Coronary heart disease is the most common type of heart disease, killing almost 380,000 people annually.
In the United States, a heart attack occurs every 34 seconds. Every 60 seconds, someone dies from a heart disease-related event. Heart disease kills 1 in 3 women, more than breast cancer and all forms of cancer combined.
71 million American adults, 33.5% of the population have high cholesterol; a major contributing risk factor for heart disease and only 1 out of every 3 adults have the condition under control.
The Role Of Diet In Heart Disease
Diet and exercise are the main ways to prevent heart disease, ensure long-term health, and prevent chronic disease. Heart healthy foods deliver power-packed phytonutrients that help to prevent and repair cellular damage and valuable macro and micronutrients to ensure optimal heart health.
Many foods also aid in preventing high cholesterol and clogging of heart arteries that can lead to the need for bypass surgery or premature death from heart attack.
Olive oil has been shown to reduce heart disease and is one of the main staples of the Mediterranean diet that a recent study showed to reduce heart disease by 30% in high-risk patients and by 9% in healthy individuals.
In addition, here are 25 more foods that are chock full of heart-healthy nutrients, which can aid in the protection of your cardiovascular system.
According to the American Heart Association, omega-3 fatty acids are heart healthy fats that fall under the category of polyunsaturated fats. Regular intake of these healthy fats helps to lower the risk of heart arrhythmias that often result in sudden death, slow plaque buildup in the heart and lower triglyceride levels.
Flaxseed provides omega-3 fatty acids, along with fiber and phytoestrogens that help to lower bad LDL cholesterol while increasing good HDL cholesterol.
Ground flaxseed can be added to cereals, yogurt, homemade muffins, and to steamed vegetables for a nutty flavor.
Many studies have confirmed that soluble dietary fiber intake greatly reduces the risk for developing heart disease. A ¼-cup serving of steel cut oats provides 15% of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s recommended daily allowance of fiber. Hot oatmeal and fresh berries is a treat for you and your heart.
Beans are very high in both soluble and insoluble fiber that helps control cholesterol, and they are a great source of lean protein as opposed to animal protein that is much higher in saturated fat that can clog heart arteries.