7 Vegan Foods That Can Help Boost Your Heart Health
What we eat influences our heart health greatly. If you are a vegan, consider adding these heart-healthy foods to your daily diet.
Eating foods rich in fibre and other nutrients helps boost your heart health
As a vegan, minimising the risk of chronic diseases, such as heart disease, should be one of your top priorities. Heart disease is a leading cause of death worldwide. In fact, according to the World Health Organisation, it accounts for more than 17-million deaths annually. The good news is that adopting a plant-based lifestyle could help reduce the risk of heart disease. Read on as we share some vegan foods that will boost your heart health.
7 Amazing vegan foods to boost your heart health:
1. Green Vegetables
Green vegetables are packed with nutrients, such as vitamins and minerals, which are essential for maintaining a healthy heart. They are also rich in antioxidants, which help protect the body from damage caused by free radicals. Green veggies, such as kale and spinach, are also rich in fibre, which helps reduce the risk of heart disease by lowering cholesterol levels.
Berries are some of the healthiest fruits you can eat. They are low in calories and high in nutrients, such as vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Berries, such as blueberries and strawberries, contain anthocyanins, which are pigments that give the fruits their vibrant colours. These pigments also act as powerful antioxidants, which help reduce inflammation in the body, a risk factor for heart disease.
Oats are a source of soluble fibre, which helps reduce cholesterol levels. They contain a type of fibre called beta-glucan, which forms a thick gel-like substance in the gut, trapping cholesterol and eliminating it from the body. Studies have shown that including oats in your diet can lower LDL ("bad") cholesterol, which is a major risk factor for heart disease.
Legumes, such as chickpeas, lentils, and beans, are a great source of plant-based protein. They are also rich in fibre, which helps lower cholesterol levels. Legumes are high in minerals, such as magnesium and potassium, which help regulate blood pressure. High blood pressure is a risk factor for heart disease.
5. Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds are a great source of healthy fats, such as monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids. They also contain fibre, which helps lower cholesterol levels. Nuts and seeds, such as almonds, walnuts, chia seeds, and flaxseeds, are also high in antioxidants and minerals, such as magnesium, which help regulate blood pressure.
Avocado is a unique fruit that is high in healthy fats, such as monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids. It is also rich in fibre, which helps lower cholesterol levels. The high fat content in avocado makes it an excellent substitute for butter or margarine. Studies have shown that replacing saturated fats with unsaturated fats, such as those found in avocado, can reduce the risk of heart disease.
7. Whole Grains
Whole grains, such as brown rice and quinoa, are a great source of fibre, which helps lower cholesterol levels. They are also rich in minerals, such as magnesium and potassium, which help regulate blood pressure. Whole grains are also low in fat, making them an excellent alternative to refined grains, such as white bread and pasta.
Maintaining a heart-healthy vegan diet is crucial for reducing the risk of chronic diseases, such as heart disease. Including foods, such as green vegetables, berries, oats, legumes, nuts and seeds, avocado, and whole grains, in your diet can improve heart health by reducing cholesterol levels, regulating blood pressure, and reducing inflammation. Consuming a variety of nutrient-dense foods in combination with regular physical activity can help promote overall heart health.
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