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Super Foods To Keep Your Heart Healthy

—by Lee Dobbins
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Heart disease is the number one killer in the US, but many people don’t realize that this number could be drastically reduced if we just ate healthier diets. For years we have been programmed to believe that cholesterol is the culprit and we should avoid things like eggs and seafood, when in fact this is only part of the story. More and more, research is finding that the real culprit is an unhealthy lifestyle and probably the worst foods for your heart are those which have been hydrogenated, such as margarine which is not natural and far more dangerous than even better as your body cannot process it properly.

Another thing that you don’t hear too much about is the effect of sugar on your heart. In fact, sugar is a leading contributor to heart disease. Sugar raises serum cholesterol and triglyceride levels and also makes your platelets extra sticky causing your blood to clot more which can be a cause of heart attack and stroke. Not only that, but it can lessen the amount of good bacteria in your intestines which indirectly increases blood cholesterol levels. Sugar also causes insulin to be released into your bloodstream and researchers now think that insulin may help cholesterol to be deposited in the walls of your blood vessels.

So what can you keep to keep your heart healthy?

Believe it or not, one of the key heart healthy foods is eggs. I know, you’ve probably believed for your whole life that eggs were bad for your heart and maybe you even avoided them. This is largely due to the fact that eggs to contain a lot of cholesterol and it was once thought that eating cholesterol would contribute to heart disease, however studies now show that the cholesterol that you eat has very little effect on the cholesterol levels in your blood. In fact, a study In the British Medical Journal reported that eating seven eggs a week in combination with a low-fat high fiber diet did not cause cholesterol levels to be raised at all. eggs have great nutritional value, especially the yolk which is loaded with choline which actually helps to dissolve fat and cholesterol.

Onions or another food that is great for your heart and in fact eating them with a high-fat meal can help platelets not get sticky or clumpy as they normally do. Both onions and garlic, when eaten raw, contain compounds that help to prevent blood clots as well as lower blood pressure and improve cholesterol levels.

It’s no secret that fish and fish oil are good for your heart and there has been quite a bit of advertising on eating high-fat fish like salmon and tuna because they are the best source of EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) Which helps decrease blood cell stickiness which can prevent abnormal clots. If you don’t want to eat fish you can try Spiraluna or flax seed or flax seed oil. If you eat the flax seeds, which by the way are extremely healthy for you, you need to grind them right before you eat them You can grind them in a coffee grinder, but if you don’t grind them they’ll pass right through your system without any of the benefits of the oils. Unfortunately, if you grind them ahead of time the oils will become oxygenated and turn rancid.

Getting enough fiber in your diet is extremely important for good heart health and in fact a Harvard University Medical School Test done over a six-year period showed that middle-aged males who increased the fiber intake to 30 g a day had a 41% reduction of myocardial infarction no matter what their cholesterol levels for. In addition it showed that breast cancer, colon cancer, diverticulitis and diabetes were also reduced. some great ways to add fiber to your diet include eating more oats no brand, chickpeas and other legumes, apple pectin, psyllium and grapefruit pectin.

The final thing you should think about for good heart health is adding some supplements. Niacin is important for your heart health and you should get about 1000 mg a day, but if you’re not getting that much currently you want to increase your dosage gradually as Niacin is a vasodilator and the resulting opening of the blood vessels can cause a "flush" which is just a temporary side effect but can be reduced by gradually increasing the dosage. co-enzyme to 10 is also Important which promotes healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels, you should try to get around 50 mg a day. Vitamin C has actually been shown to reverse heart disease and its key in preventing it in the first place. Not only that, but it is a powerfull antioxidant and has many other health benefits you should try to get at least 2 g of vitamin C each day. Lecithin is another important nutrient for your heart although you don’t hear much about it. It can be found in egg yolks or in supplement form. Selenium is a powerful antioxidant which can directly prevent our atheriosclerosis and does its job best when taken with vitamin E. While in overdose of selenium can be toxic, there are indications that the RDA of 70 mcg is insufficient and should be something more like 200 mcg. You might want to increase your intake gradually under the supervision of your physician.

If you want to learn about more ways to keep your heart and the rest of your body healthy through nutrition and natural means, sign up for the Natural Health Buzz newsletter or visit the Health Buzz site to read more articles on super foods for super health.

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