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EAT WHOLE GRAINS: LIVE LONGER AND PREVENT HEART DISEASE

eat whole grainIn their ongoing investigation of over 74,000 women from the Nurses’ Health Study (1984–2010) and almost 44,000 men from the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study (1986–2010), 2 large prospective cohort studies, Harvard researchers* have some new and exciting findings to report.

The results? Whole grain intake was significantly and inversely associated with a reduction in risk of total mortality (9% ) and a reduction in risk of death from cardiovascular disease (15% reduction in risk) in American men and women, independent of other dietary and lifestyle factors. More specifically, bran intake showed a similar inverse association of total mortality (6% reduction in risk of death) and cardiovascular disease mortality (a whopping 20% reduction in risk of death), whereas the wheat germ showed no association.

These results add to the considerable body of scientific evidence showing the spectacular health benefits of consuming whole grains on a daily basis. Unfortunately, the average American eats less than one serving per day, and almost half of all Americans never eat whole grains at all. (Younger adults tend to eat less than one serving daily.)

A kernel of wheat grain contains three parts: the germ, endosperm and bran. Refined grains consist of only the endosperm, hence have lost the life-extending bran portion. Furthermore, all three components contain the plant storage protein known as gluten, a component of grains currently shunned by many Americans.

Rx: to extend your life and keep your heart healthy, aim to eat three servings of whole grains a day (remember, “3 is key”) and do NOT avoid gluten unless you have been medically diagnosed with celiac disease (experts estimate that only about 1% of Americans have celiac disease) or have been diagnosed with gluten intolerance.

Here is a list of some whole grains readily available in the supermarket:

Corn, Whole oats/oatmeal, 100% whole wheat flour, Popcorn, Brown rice, Whole-grain barley, Wild rice, Buckwheat, Quinoa.

The bottom line? Eat whole grains (rich in bran) to live longer free of heart disease—the leading cause of death in American men and women!

 

* “Whole Grain Intake and Mortality: Two Large Prospective Studies in US Men and Women,” Hongyu Wu, Alan J. Flint, Qibin Qi, Rob B. van Dam, Laura A. Sampson, Eric B. Rimm, Michelle D. Holmes, Walter C. Willett, Frank B. Bu, Qi Sun, JAMA Internal Medicine, doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2014.6283, online Jan. 5, 2015

MATTERS OF THE HEART: HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE IN WOMEN

blood-pressure-downOne in thirty women die of breast cancer, one in three die from cardiovascular disease (heart attacks or stroke). Heart disease is not just a man’s disease! Women need to take control of their cardiovascular health and learn their risk factors for this deadly disease, the leading cause of death of American women. Heart attacks disable or kill men in their forties and fifties, during their most productive years. And while women take a decade to catch up to men, heart attacks and stroke are the leading cause of death for them too. High blood pressure is the number one cause of stroke and a major risk factor for heart attacks. In fact, high blood pressure contributes to more deaths in men and women than any other preventable factor. But the good news is, it can easily be controlled.

What is a healthy blood pressure reading? The medical community states that a normal, healthy blood pressure reading is less than 120/80 mm Hg. Above this number and you are living in the danger zone. What causes high blood pressure? It could be due to any number of factors, such as sedentary lifestyle, obesity, high salt intake, or aging. A poor diet, especially one too high in bad fats and salty, high-calorie processed foods, will contribute to weight gain, create a mineral imbalance in the body, and raise your blood pressure. Not getting enough exercise also contributes to high blood pressure.

One of the most effective ways to decrease your pressure is to cut your intake of salt, as excess sodium intake is undoubtedly linked to the development of high blood pressure, heart disease and stroke. According to the American Heart Association, all of us should strive to cap our sodium intake at just 1,500 mg a day (that’s just a little over half a teaspoon of salt!), yet the average American eats almost triple that amount. According to the CDC, nine in 10 American adults eat too much salt every day. Perhaps this is because some of the saltiest foods we eat do not necessarily taste salty. It would behoove all Americans to beware of relying too much on taste buds for salt detection and to review the list of tips below:

Ten Surprisingly Simple Tips for Cutting Back on Your Intake of Salt

1. Eat more fresh foods. As long as our food supply is laden with salt, your best bet is to make your own food. Substitute fresh and whole unprocessed foods for processed foods whenever possible. The vast majority of natural, unprocessed fruits and vegetables contain only a minimal amount of sodium. At the supermarket, routinely buy fresh or frozen produce (with no added salt). Frequent salad bars and load up on unprocessed fruit and veggies.

2. When you are buying packaged foods, read and use the information on the food labels to allow easy comparison between brands. Always check the ingredient list for sodium, MSG, baking soda, and other sodium-containing compounds. You will be surprised at the tremendous difference between products in terms of sodium content. Only buy boxes, cans, and bags of food with the words “low sodium” or “sodium free” on the front. (“Low sodium” is defined as less than 140 mg and “high sodium” is more than 480 mg per serving.)

3. Rinse canned foods, and dilute high-sodium foods. Buy low-sodium beans and tuna and rinse in a strainer to drain off more of the salt. Cook pasta, cereals, and rice without added salt. Add salt-free beans, veggies, or grains (such as brown rice) to take-out, packaged, or frozen foods to dilute the sodium count.

4. Throw out the seasoning packets. Flavor rice or pasta yourself, and keep your intake of boxed foods or canned soups to a minimum. Watch condiments such as soy sauce, teriyaki sauce, ketchup, mustard, pickles, capers, and olives; use very little or omit them entirely from your diet. Use sprays, balsamic and other types of vinegar, and extra-virgin olive oil to flavor your food without the salt!

5. Just say no to convenience foods. Cut down on foods that come in a box, bag, or bottle (other than unsalted nuts or dried fruit). Pass on the take-out pizza—salty bread doused with salty tomato sauce and topped off with salty, fatty cheese. Remember, you can make almost anything from scratch, quickly, easily, and without spending hours in the kitchen. Think how you can use your rice cooker, Cuisinart, slow cooker, and blender to prepare foods. Salt-free seasoning blends, nuts and seeds, dried fruit, vinegars, and even peanut butter can be used for flavoring.

6. Order it your way. When eating out, order plain food without added sodium. Take care to customize your order, and ask for your food to be prepared without salt. Be sure to be assertive with your waiter or directly with the chef. Order sauces and dressing on the side. Ask for condiments that are low in sodium. Watch the take-out or cheap eats—salt makes cheap food taste better.

7. Use herbs and spices in lieu of salt. Eat at home as often as possible, cooking fresh foods. Eliminate added salt and use chopped fresh herbs and spices to flavor food. Herbs such as rosemary, parsley, dill, chives, cilantro, and basil; spices such as cinnamon, cumin, and nutmeg; and seasonings such as lemon and lime juice, hot sauce, wasabi paste, vinegar, pepper, and salt-free seasoning blends all make great salt substitutes.

8. Get rid of the salt shaker. A dash of table salt contains about 155 mg sodium, so be careful. Keep the pepper mill handy on the table, along with hot sauce and spice mixes. Find lower-sodium alternative seasonings that appeal to your taste buds. Be adventurous and flavor foods with sliced fresh ginger, garlic and garlic powder, a touch of horseradish (1 tablespoon of prepared horseradish contains 47 mg sodium), and other lower-sodium condiments.

9. Check medication ingredient labels. Scrutinize the labels of all over-the-counter medications such as antacids for sodium content. Look for low-sodium varieties instead.

10. Savor your salt. Save those salty favorite foods for a special treat. Sodium in foods you consume frequently can really add up, so be sure to watch portion sizes of bread, and cut way back on (or eliminate) processed meats, deli meats, sodium-heavy cheeses, and restaurant and frozen pizzas and pasta dishes. When you do splurge on a salty treat, watch your sodium intake especially carefully for the rest of the day. Use higher-sodium condiments such as ketchup, barbeque sauce, mustard, pickles, olives, and Worcestershire sauce sparingly.

As a spokesperson for the American Heart Association, it is my job to translate the evidence-based guidelines into dietary advice that will help prevent heart disease in Americans—the nation’s leading cause of death in both men and women. Most deaths in American women are caused by cardiovascular disease, which is highly preventable. Getting your BLOOD PRESSURE DOWN will help battle this statistic and enable women to better take control of their heart health.
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Nationally recognized nutrition, health and fitness expert and published author Dr. Janet Brill specializes in cardiovascular disease prevention and has authored three books on the topic; the most recent is Blood Pressure DOWN (Three Rivers Press, May 7, 2013). Her second book, Prevent a Second Heart Attack  follows the bestselling book, Cholesterol Down (Three Rivers Press, 2006). For more information on Dr. Janet or her books, please visit: www.DrJanet.com

7 Benefits of Heart Healthy Kiwi Fruit

heart healthy food

Savor Heart Healthy Kiwi Fruit

Vibrant green color, unique flavor, and packed with vitamin C; kiwi fruits add a refreshing taste and a whole lot of nutrition to a bowl of salad. Kiwis offer a host of health benefits as well as adding a tropical flair and bright emerald green color to your palate. They are loaded with vitamins and minerals (most notably vitamin C and potassium) that promote health. Here are some of the benefits of nutrient dense kiwi fruit:

Secret to healthy skin
Kiwi fruits are loaded with vitamin C – a vitamin that protects your skin from pollution and prevents wrinkles. Instead of going through expensive beauty treatments, eat a kiwi fruit and help slow down the aging process. Kiwi fruit is your secret to beautiful skin!

Strengthens immunity
The high content of vitamin C in kiwi fruit not only promotes healthy skin but also boosts immunity.

Aids in digestion
Kiwi fruit contains actinidain – an enzyme that helps with meal digestion. Eating this fiber rich fruit prevents constipation and many other intestinal problems. Moreover, the high fiber content of kiwi fruit helps flush out harmful toxins from the intestinal tract.

Lower blood pressure
Kiwi fruit is a rich source of potassium – a mineral that reduces the negative effects of sodium and keeps electrolytes in balance. People whose diet is low in potassium and high in sodium are more prone to developing high blood pressure. Sodium is the culprit that leads to increased BP. Potassium rich Kiwi fruit combats the harmful effects of sodium and helps bring that blood pressure down!

Heart Healthy
Kiwi fruit is a true heart healthy food. The potassium and fiber rich content of kiwi fruits promote cardiovascular health. As mentioned above, the high potassium content of kiwi fruit means reduced sodium in your body and a healthier vascular system. Eating kiwi fruit reduces blood pressure, prevents heart disease and lowers the risk of cardiovascular disease significantly. Moreover kiwi fruit also prevents kidney stones and loss of muscle mass.

Helps in weight loss
Kiwi fruit is high in fiber and vitamins and low in calories. Hence it is a great fruit (and snack) for anyone intent on losing some weight.

Promote eye health
Kiwi fruit contains lutein and zeaxanthin – nutrients that protect the eyes from age related macular degeneration—the leading cause of blindness in the elderly.

There are many ways you can incorporate kiwi fruit in your diet. Make a delicious kiwi smoothie, or add this vibrant green fruit to a bowl of Greek plain yogurt or fruit salad. You can make jam or use kiwi as a dip in (or on) Greek yogurt. The creative options to enjoy this superbly heart healthy fruit are endless.

Soy – A Miracle Food that Lowers Blood Pressure

Lower Blood Pressure

Nutritious Soy Milk

For a healthy heart, live by the mantra “eat more plants and less animals”. Adding soy into your day is a simple way to live by this mantra. Soy is the perfect alternative for meat as it is a complete protein, a high-quality plant protein, meaning it provides all the essential amino acids required in the human diet, and unlike animal protein, it contains zero cholesterol and only a minute amount of artery-clogging saturated fat.

Soy is also an excellent source of dietary fiber, B vitamins (including the heart healthy folic acid), calcium, iron and omega-3 fats. Loaded with fiber, vitamins and other nutrients, soy is truly a nutrition powerhouse.

Soy is a safe and wholesome food (legume) that has been a staple protein source of East Asian populations for centuries. In fact, Chinese people have eaten it for at least 5,000 years, and Japanese for 1,000 years. Soy or soybeans are associated with a variety of health benefits. Let’s have a look at some of the benefits of adding soy to your daily diet:

Lowers blood pressure
Soy is and excellent source of amino acids. But unlike animal protein, soy contains ZERO cholesterol and miniscule amount of saturated fat. That makes it a heart healthy food that helps lower blood pressure. In fact, scientific studies have shown that eating soy protein can lower blood pressure whereas eating animal protein, more specifically red and processed meats increase blood pressure.

The leading cause of death in the United States for both men and women is heart disease. Two of the major risk factors predisposing you to developing heart disease is high cholesterol and high blood pressure. A diet rich in soy helps prevent heart disease by bringing cholesterol and blood pressure down.

Animal protein such as red and processed meat is high in saturated fat and dietary cholesterol. This increases the amount of (LDL) bad cholesterol in your blood and thus escalates your risk of heart attack and stroke.

Reduces blood sugar
Soy is not only good for the arteries, it also helps you regulate your blood sugar level blood sugar level and improve the health of your kidneys. High blood sugar and insulin levels, a condition called “insulin resistance,” has been implicated as a causative factor in the development of high blood pressure. Soy protein decreases blood sugar level and lessens insulin resistance.

Protect against osteoporosis
Soy contains isoflavones that are known to be effective in reducing or preventing bone loss. Soy also contains the bone-building mineral superstar, calcium. Thus, people who eat a soy rich diet are less likely to develop osteoporosis.

Good for menopausal health
Soy is known to relieve certain pre and postmenopausal symptoms in women. Women who consume soy are less likely to develop hot flashes and night sweats. Moreover soy is also associated with reducing the risks of developing breast cancer.

Soy is a true miracle food that not only reduces blood pressure, and promotes bone health but presents a host of other health benefits too.

You can add soy in your diet in a various ways. You can substitute cow’s milk with soy milk. You can snack on unsalted, dry roasted soy nuts. Or you can cook heart healthy recipes with tofu and tempeh.

And remember, whenever you have an option between animals or plants, always choose the vegetarian version!

Grilling your Way to Health

Heart Healthy Recipe

Delicious and Heart-Healthy Salt-Free Seasonings

Grilling is a superbly healthy and lean cooking technique; just don’t ruin the health aspect by dousing your grilled food with a salt-laden marinade or other seasoning. Grill your way to better health with vegetables and lean meats, but be sure to season them with delicious salt-free seasoning blends.

The CDC recommends that all of us curb our sodium intake to <2,300 mg of sodium per day to reduce your risk of developing heart disease, high blood pressure, and other serious health conditions.

Salt is made up of 40% sodium. Just 1 tsp of salt = 2,400 mg of Sodium, putting you over your daily limit.

Look for salt-free wording printed on the packaging of poultry, seafood, and all-purpose seasonings and marinades and take a quick look at the sodium content on the food label.

Better yet, make your own salt-free seasonings and marinades such as this week’s featured recipe, Salt-Free Grilling Seasoning, a perfectly delicious and heart-healthy seasoning to spice up your Memorial Day weekend!

Salt-Free Grilling Seasoning

Sprinkle the seasoning as your taste prefers. The more you add, the more intense the flavor becomes. This salt-free seasoning contains zero cholesterol and helps prevent heart disease.

Yield: About 1/3 cup

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tablespoon paprika
  • 2 Tablespoon of garlic powder
  • 1 Tablespoon of dry mustard
  • ½ Tablespoon of onion powered
  • ½ Tablespoon of brown sugar
  • 2 tsp of cayenne pepper

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and mix until all spices are evenly dispersed. Sprinkle grilling seasoning on vegetables and/or lean protein before grilling.

Nutrition Information Per Serving:

Calories: 190 kcal
Fat: 6g
Cholesterol: 0mg
Carbohydrate: 33g
Dietary Fiber: 10g
Protein: 8g
Sodium: 20mg

Top 5 Benefits of Eating Heart Healthy Avocados

Heart Healthy Food

Avocados = Heart Healthy Food

Silky texture, great flavor and a nutrition powerhouse! You gotta love those avocados.

Native to Central America and Mexico, avocados are also known as “alligator pears” because of their leather-like appearance and the texture of their skin. Mostly grown in tropical and Mediterranean climates, avocados differ in weight depending upon the variety.

Rich in vitamins and essential nutrients, avocados are considered one of the world’s healthiest foods. Let’s have a look at some of the benefits of adding avocados into your diet:

1. Heart Healthy food

Heart disease is the major cause of death in the USA. Some of the major contributing factors that increase risk of developing heart disease include leading a sedentary lifestyle and a dietary intake high in processed foods and “bad” fats.

Avocados are Mother Nature’s heart health medicine. They are rich in folic acid, and vitamin B6 that help regulate homocysteine levels in the blood. Avocados are also an excellent source of the antioxidant vitamin, vitamin E that helps prevent LDL cholesterol oxidization. Avocados are also high in the heart healthy “good” fat, the monounsaturated fatty acid called oleic acid, known to help promote cardiovascular health and prevent heart disease.

2. Reduce cholesterol

Avocados contain a phytosterol compound known as beta-sitosterol that has been shown to be effective in lowering cholesterol (LDL). This pear-shaped green skinned fruit is also great source of potassium – the spectacular blood pressure lowering mineral superstar.

3. Good for eyes

The presence of the carotenoid lutein in avocados helps protect your eyes against cataracts and age-related macular degeneration—the leading cause of blindness in older Americans.

4. Regulate blood sugar levels

Avocados are rich in soluble fiber, the type that helps maintain blood sugar levels. Avocados also contain a nice amount of soluble fiber—the kind of fiber that contributes to digestive health.

5. Keeps skin healthy and nourished

Avocados are rich in monounsaturated fats, vitamin E, vitamin C and many other nutrients that are great for the skin. The monounsaturated fats keeps your skin nourished and soft; vitamin C helps maintain the elasticity of your skin and vitamin E protects against sun exposure thereby staving off wrinkles and premature aging.

Avocados can be used in a variety of different ways in your heart healthy recipes. Try adding some to your smoothie for a creamy texture and to boost nutrition, slice some up for your salad or use creamy, ripe avocado in lieu of butter as a sandwich spread.

Dr. Janet’s Fresh Avocado Dip (Guacamole)

Recipe excerpt from Dr. Janet’s book: BLOOD PRESSURE DOWN: the 10-step program to lower your blood pressure in 4 weeks–without prescription drugs (Crown/Three Rivers, May 2013)

lower blood pressure

Scrumptious Avocado Dip

Serve as a dip with fresh veggies or whole wheat pita chips.

  • 2 cups chopped avocado (from 2 medium avocados)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt-free seasoning
  • 6 drops hot pepper sauce

Mash the avocado in a bowl with a fork until desired consistency. Mix in the cilantro, lime juice, garlic powder, ground cumin, salt-free seasoning, and hot pepper sauce. Serve immediately.

Yield 1 1/2 cups

Serves 6

Nutrition per 1/4 cup serving:

Calories: 98 kcal
Sodium: 6 mg
Potassium: 301 mg
Magnesium: 17 mg
Calcium: 9 mg
Fat: 9 g (EPA 0g, DHA 0g, ALA <1g)
Saturated Fat: 1 g
Cholesterol: 0 mg
Carbohydrate: 5 g
Dietary fiber: 4 g
Sugars: <1 g
Protein: 1 g

Parsley – A Heart Healthy Herb Abundant in Vitamins

 

heart healthy food

Use Parsley in food for health benefits

A sprig of parsley is tiny in size but huge in terms of health benefits. Parsley is a Mediterranean herb that adds a great taste and vibrant color to any dish! But don’t let your parsley serve as a mere herb for garnishing your plate, make sure to EAT this decorative herb too. There is much more to this herb than meets the eye. Parsley has been around for more than 2000 years, and boasts of medicinal properties. (It has been used since ancient times for its healing.)

  • Parsley contains an abundance of several vital vitamins which include vitamin A, C, B12, and K. Here are some great benefits of eating your parsley in your meals:
  • Parsley is packed with vitamin C , the antioxidant water soluble vitamin that boosts immunity and makes your skin look youthful and radiant.
  • This vibrant green herb boasts of anti-inflammatory properties that provide relief from joint pain and relax stiff muscles. It is especially good for people suffering from arthritis and joint problems.
  • Parsley contains polyphenol flavonoids such as apigenin, known to lower the risk of developing various cancers such as prostate, breast and skin.
  • Parsley contains a large amount of the B vitamin folic acid or folate that helps prevent thickening of artery walls. Thus parsley helps prevent heart disease by preventing blood vessels from oxidative damage. Regular intake of parsley in your meals also helps lower blood pressure, as parsley is rich in the mineral, potassium.
  • Worried about bad breath? Eat parsley. Some people eat a parsley sprig after finishing their meals. This is because parsley contains antioxidants and antibacterial properties that aid in fighting oral bacteria.
  • Parsley has antibiotic properties that help prevent urinary tract infections. Although parsley has myriad health benefits, some people may be sensitive to it and potentially suffer from an upset stomach after eating large amounts. Just remember to consume it in moderation.

Parsley is not just a garnish to enhance the look of your meal. Be sure to eat your sprigs of parsley, a true heart healthy food that brings with it a host of nutritional benefits.

The Beauty of Oranges Inside and Out– Reservoir of Vitamin C

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Oranges are heart healthy foods

Juicy, sweet and a virtual reservoir of vitamin C, oranges are a baseball-sized food simply packed with nutrition. Cultivated since ancient times, oranges belong to the family of citrus species. (Orange trees are the most cultivated fruit trees in the world.)

It is believed that oranges first originated in India. In Europe (Spain, Portugal and Italy) sweet oranges were first imported from India. From there, Spaniards brought oranges to South and North America.

Oranges contain a wealth of nutrients including calcium, potassium, vitamin C, vitamin A, fiber and much more. Let’s have a look at some of the benefits of eating yummy and nutritious oranges:

  • SKIN: As we grow old, our skin tends to lose its elasticity. With some 170 different phytochemicals and more than 60 flavonoids, oranges are loaded with powerful antioxidants (including vitamin C) that help slow down the aging process, keeping your skin looking healthy and glowing. The secret to a radiant skin and wrinkle prevention doesn’t lie in expensive creams, but rather what you choose to put into your mouth. So for beautiful looking skin, its simple – eat oranges!
  • VISION HEALTH: The presence of vitamin A and carotenoid compounds in oranges are known to contribute to eye health by improving vision and protecting against age-related macular degeneration (the leading cause of blindness in elderly Americans).
  • HEART HEALTH: This delicious fruit contains soluble fiber and flavonoids such as hesperidin that work together to keep your arteries smooth and flexible. The soluble fiber removes toxins (including cholesterol) from the body and thus brings cholesterol down.
  • BLOOD PRESSURE: Oranges are a fantastic source of potass
  • benefits-of-orangesium, the mineral superstar that is highly effective in bringing blood pressure down. The one two punch of eating oranges: lower cholesterol and blood pressure, makes this a superb food for preventing heart disease.
  • CANCER: Oranges boasts of a compound known as D–limonene that helps prevent skin, lung and breast cancer. In addition to the presence of vitamin C, numerous other powerful antioxidants in this fruit further boost immunity to combat cancer cells.
  • BOWEL HEALTH: Oranges are packed with dietary fiber that help relieve constipation and maintain a healthy digestive system. The combination of fiber and powerful plant antioxidants are thought to reduce the risk of colorectal cancer.

Oranges are true heart healthy food that not only boost immunity but protect against several chronic diseases and reduce cholesterol. At a mere 60 calories per fruit, oranges can also help in weight loss.

Eat oranges or drink its juice for better health!

Mushrooms Lower Cholesterol & Promote Heart Health

low cholesterol food- mushrooms

Mushrooms are low in calories

Known for their distinct flavor, mushrooms are small in size but large in nutrients. For centuries, mushrooms have been revered as a delicious food and a powerful medicine. Ancient Romans regarded mushrooms as a nutritious food that provided strength to soldiers. Egyptians celebrated mushrooms as a food fit for royalty.

There are around 300 species of edible mushrooms. Mushrooms are actually classified as neither a plant nor an animal but a fungus. Mushrooms provide myriad nutrition and health benefits. Let’s have a look at some of the benefits of eating mushrooms:

  • Mushrooms are loaded with plant antioxidants that boost immune system and help protect against flu, cold and infections. Oyster mushrooms are especially high in antioxidants.
  • Mushrooms are an excellent source of beta-glucan, a unique type of soluble fiber proven bring cholesterol down (LDL – bad cholesterol) and improve cardiovascular health.
  • Portobello mushrooms contain the compound ergosterol which is a potent anti-inflammatory which helps keep the heart healthy and prevent heart disease.
  • Mushrooms are a great source of potassium, copper, phosphorous, vitamin C, selenium and iron that provide protection against free radicals in body. Especially white button mushrooms, which are an unusually rich source of vitamin D. People suffering from vitamin D deficiency can benefit from eating mushrooms as well as wild salmon—two natural food sources of vitamin D.
  • There are various types of mushrooms available in the market. The most common variety – white button mushrooms such as crimini contain compounds that help inhibit cancer cell growth. Studies have found that eating mushrooms may play a role in prevention of breast and prostate cancers in particular.
  • Mushrooms are abundant in B vitamins, including niacin and riboflavin. Mushrooms are also extremely low on the GI scale, hence they have zero effect on blood sugar level.
  • Mushrooms are low in calories which makes them an excellent aid for weight loss.

Cholesterol free, fat free, low in sodium, and incredibly low in calories; mushrooms are a nutrition powerhouse and a heart healthy food. Add them to your daily diet for better health and weight control.

Myriad Benefits of Eating Carrots – True Heart Healthy Food

Heart Healthy Food

Eat Carrots to Look & Feel Healthy

Vibrant color, crunchy and super nutritious! Carrots are a true superfood that are not just good for the eyes but offer a plethora of additional health benefits ranging from smooth beautiful skin, to heart disease and cancer prevention.

Apart from being the number one vegetable source of the vitamin A precursor, beta-carotene, carrots also house a nice amount of dietary fiber, magnesium, potassium, vitamin K, vitamin E, folate, zinc and phosphorous. Let’s have a look at some of the health benefits of eating carrots:

Super food for eyes
To enhance your vision, go for a healthy nutritious diet rather than popping vitamin A, lutein and lycopene pills—marketed for eye health. Bugs Bunny was right, colorful carrots are the ultimate health food. Carrots are a naturally rich source of beta-carotene (the vitamin A precursor) that helps protect against the development of cataracts and macular degeneration (the leading cause of blindness in the elderly).

Glowing, beautiful skin
The bright orange hue of carrots are your secret weapon for healthy looking, glowing skin. You should know that a deficiency of vitamin A in the body leads to dry skin, and unhealthy hair.

The presence of powerful antioxidants in carrots not only prevents dryness, but also protects the skin from sun damage.

The beta-carotene content in carrots slows down the aging of cells. Don’t waste your money on anti-aging creams. Try Mother Nature’s natural solution for beautiful aging…eat carrots. The nutrients housed in carrots can help prevent blemishes, pigmentation, and premature wrinkling.

Heart healthy food
Carrots are an excellent source of lutein, beta-carotene and alpha-carotene—powerful phytochemicals that help prevent heart disease. Regular consumption of fibrous carrots can also help bring your cholesterol down. And all this for a mere 25 calories in a large carrot–what a superb heart healthy food!

Prevents cancer
Carrots contain carotenoids that have proven anti-cancer properties which squelch the destructive forces of free radicals in the body. Eating carrots has been shown to help reduce the risk of developing colon, lung and breast cancer.

Men who consume diets rich in beta-carotene are at lesser risk of developing prostate cancer.

Rich in fiber
The fiber in carrots binds to bile in the intestine and helps flush out harmful toxins from the body (they can help regulate your blood sugar level as well).

Prevents tooth damage
Carrots are not only great for your eyes but they are exceptionally good for your teeth and gums. Eating this nutritious vegetable helps prevent tooth damage and decay.

You can eat carrots raw, steamed or boiled. (Note that studies have shown that cooking carrots actually increases the amount of antioxidants compared to raw.)

Use this heart healthy food in stews, salads, soups and juice.