5 Foods to Eat for a Healthy Heart
Feb 09, 2017
Heart disease is still the number one killer in the United States and both men and women are affected by it! February is American Heart Month and we want you to focus on foods that are friendly to your heart!
5 Foods to Include in Your Diet for Heart Health:
- Oatmeal- high in soluble fiber, which not only helps move extra cholesterol out of your body, but has also shown to help improve blood sugar control.
- Try eating oatmeal for breakfast most days out of the week with fruit and nuts or peanut butter added to it. Try adding oatmeal to your meatloaf to add bulk and fiber to your meal.
- Soy – is a vegetarian source of protein that has been shown to help reduce “bad” LDL cholesterol.
- Use soy based foods like tofu in your smoothies for a creamy texture with added protein. Swap milk for soy milk in your cereal or use it as a coffee creamer. Top your salad with edamame or add it to a slaw recipe.
- Spinach – like other vegetables, spinach is good source of potassium, fiber and is very low in calories.
- Add spinach to your smoothies for extra vitamins and fiber. Use spinach in soup recipes or add it to your scrambled eggs & omelets.
- Salmon – a wonderful source of omega-3 fatty acids, which have shown to help lower the risk of having a heart attack, reduce triglyceride levels and help to decrease blood pressure levels.
- Aim for at least 2 servings of salmon per week (or 8oz/week) to get these heart healthy benefits. Try a pesto baked salmon for dinner or poached lemon pepper salmon on top of a salad for lunch.
- Walnuts - full of polyunsaturated fats, which are known to have a cholesterol lowering effect. They also contain omega-3 fats like salmon, which is great for people that don’t eat fish.
- Have a small handful (1/4 cup or about 7 whole walnuts) for a snack or use them along with raisins for a trail mix. Top your oatmeal with crushed walnuts or use them as a topping for baked fish or chicken.
Information in part courtesy of Eatright.org
Here is a recipe that contains a good source of Omega-3 fats (the Heart-Healthy kind) from the salmon and can be prepared in only 30 minutes!
Oven-Baked Salmon with Snow Peas
Prep Time: 30 minutes Number of Servings: 4
- 3 leeks, finely chopped (white parts only)
- 2 carrots, peeled and cut into thin matchsticks
- 1/2 lb snow peas (fresh or frozen)
- 4 salmon fillets (4oz each)
- 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 teaspoons sesame oil, divided
- 6oz baby spinach
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 lemon, cut into quarters (for garnishing)
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Tear off four large sheets (18 X 12-inch) of heavy-duty aluminum foil and lay each piece on a clean flat surface.
- Divide the leeks, carrots and snow peas into 4 equal portions and place a mixture of each onto each sheet of foil.
- Top each mound of vegetables with a piece of salmon. Sprinkle with ½ teaspoon ginger on each piece of fish and drizzle each with ½ tablespoon vinegar and ¼ teaspoon sesame oil.
- Fold the foil to form a “packet” around each piece of fish, leaving enough room for heat to circulate. Roll the edges to seal tightly and place the packets on a cookie sheet and bake for 20 minutes or until the fish flakes easily with a fork.
- Meanwhile, place the spinach leaves in a microwave-safe bowl or platter. Drizzle the greens with fresh lemon juice and the remaining 2 teaspoons sesame oil.
- Heat the spinach in the microwave on high power for 3 minutes, checking every minute to make sure the spinach is tender but not over-cooked. Divide the greens equally among four plates.
- When the salmon is cooked, open the packets carefully to allow the steam to escape. Empty each packet onto each of the beds of spinach. Garnish each plate with a lemon wedge and serve.
Nutrition Facts (per serving):
Calories: 255 Protein: 25.6gm Total Carbohydrates: 16gm Fiber: 3.7gm
Total Fat: 10gm Cholesterol: 63mg Sodium: 123mg
Recipe courtesy of Produce for Better Health Foundation
Melanie Kluzek, Registered Dietitian for County Market