What are some good heart healthy foods that I could eat?

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Answered by: Natasha, An Expert in the Heart Healthy Diets Category
With all the different things to eat out there, it can be difficult to decide which foods are best for good heart health. But the key to knowing which foods to choose lies in knowing what nutrients you need to look for. Some of the best foods to take care of your heart will be high in protein, and most are low in salt and fat. Just about any fruits and vegetables, and any foods with Omega-3 fatty acids and fiber will do, because they help prevent heart attacks. Also, flavonoid and carotenoid filled foods will help you maintain a healthy heart by acting as antioxidants.

Here are some of the best and most nutrient rich foods to eat for heart health.

Salmon - Along with other fish like tuna and sardines, salmon is chock full of Omega-3 fatty acids, and it's nothing but protein. Try it baked with lemon and rosemary, and serve with steamed broccoli and brown rice, both of which are also great for your heart.

Almonds - Almonds are protein and fiber rich, and contain healthy fats. Chopped almonds are delicious in salads, and add a nice crunch to green beans.

Oatmeal - There is a reason they call oatmeal a super food.. It contains fiber, protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and calcium, too, among other things. Oatmeal can be prepared in several ways and used in a variety of things, from bread to pies and cookies to yogurt. Add some dried cranberries and nuts to oatmeal cookies, and enjoy.

Beans - Fiber, protein, and Omegsa-3 fatty acids make beans a great meal base, served with some rice and corn. A good black bean soup or bowl of chili with pintos will warm you on a cold day.

Berries - Any of them will suffice, especially blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries. The flavonoids in these sweet treats will help prevent clogged arteries. Put them in yogurt or oatmeal to sweeten the deal.

Spinach - Another carotenoid carrier, spinach and other dark green vegetables will aid in the prevention of heart attacks, and blood clots, too. Eat it on a sandwich instead of lettuce. Put some tomatoes on that sandwich, and snack on some baby carrots while you're at it.

Flaxseed - Ground up, it can be put into just about anything for added fiber, so throw some in with cereal, stews, and other dishes. But start off with light quantities, so as not to upset your stomach when eating it.

Dark Chocolate and Red Wine - Yes, you may indulge every once in a while. Try dark chocolate covered almonds for a snack, or have a glass of red wine with dinner one night out of the week. The flavonoids in these help in cell repair as well as for heart attack prevention.

One thing to keep in mind is that the deeper the color of the food, the better for you it is, so when you go grocery shopping, focus on that aspect. Use oils like olive and canola for cooking, and stir fry instead of deep fry. Skip the salt and go for lemon juice and herbs.

Try to include these heart healthy foods in your diet each week. You can serve them in so many ways, and they all go good with a variety of other heart healthy foods. The possibilities are actually endless. Mix and match, and enjoy!

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