5 Superfoods for a healthy heart
This article is about those plant world superheroes that are particularly beneficial to your heart health. You’ve probably heard of superfoods many times, but what exactly are superfoods? And what criteria do they have to meet to qualify as such?
As yet, there is no universally accepted definition of what determines a superfood. In general, however, we refer to those foods particularly rich in nutrients and that provide a special benefit for health. It is considered a superfood if it is extremely rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and phytochemicals or also provides healthy fats that are essential for your body and help to prevent chronic diseases.
This doesn’t mean that certain foods are a cure-all for all. Some foods just have more health-promoting qualities than others.
EAT SMARTER – your heart will thank you!
Superfoods have been proven to prevent diseases such as cancer and heart conditions. However, this only works if you regularly consume a well-balanced diet.
The heart is our most important muscle, as it beats around three billion times during our lives. It ensures that oxygen, nutrients, and messenger substances are transported with the blood. Therefore, we should protect it as well as we can. After all, if we treat our hearts with insufficient care, we run the risk of serious conditions such as heart attacks or cardiovascular diseases. For those reasons, prevention and good nutrition should be a priority.
Superfoods are not necessarily exotic or expensive. Many are very common and accessible in our country as well. In other words, you can easily incorporate them into your daily diet.
Foods with superpowers for a ultra-healthy heart
1. Beans: Beans are the new “meat”. They provide a good plant-based source of protein, fiber, and minerals. On top of that, they contain so little saturated fat – bad fats that can raise cholesterol and increase the risk of heart disease – that a 100-g serving of beans per week reduces the risk of coronary heart disease by 14%. Alternatively, you can choose lentils or chickpeas and enjoy the same benefits.
2. Berries: Studies have shown a strong link between berries and heart health. Berries provide a chemical compound called anthocyanin that lowers blood pressure and protects blood vessels. To get the full heart health benefits, you should eat berries three times a week.
3. Leafy Greens: Kale, spinach, broccoli, or even pak choi – dark leafy greens are rich in nutrients, vitamins, and minerals. They are especially high in B vitamin folate, which helps prevent heart disease, cancer and strengthen bones.
4. Nuts, Seeds, Salmon: Although your overall fat intake shouldn’t be too high, there are specific fats that you should include in your diet. Nuts and seeds, for example, contain monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids. These good fats lower your cholesterol and prevent cardiovascular disease. Salmon is also particularly rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
5. Oats: Oats, preferably rolled oats, provide a fiber called beta-glucan. This fiber has been shown to support healthy digestion, but may also prevent heart attacks or strokes.
Healthy eating habits alone are not enough!
While it’s true that these foods contain components that are good for your heart and therefore qualify as superfoods, nutrition alone isn’t enough. Exercise and sleep are as important as your diet to lower your risk of heart disease.
Try to adopt a healthy lifestyle that you can maintain long term. Find routines and habits that bring you joy and make you feel better. If you can’t do this right away, don’t worry! A healthy lifestyle is a process that takes time and practice before it can become a habit.
Use our app to get inspired by gratifying (heart-healthy) recipes. And stay tuned for the Weekly Class, you’ll find new cooking lessons coming soon!
Your Humanoo Team