Heart: Eating These Vegan Heart-Healthy Foods Could Boost Your Health
In this article, we list vegan heart-healthy foods that can help reduce your risk of heart disease.
Various fruits and veggies can help boost your heart health while being vegan
Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death worldwide. According to the World Health Organization, an estimated 17.9 million people die each year due to cardiovascular diseases. While genetics and lifestyle factors like smoking and lack of physical activity play a significant role in the development of heart disease, diet also influences cardiovascular health.
A diet high in saturated and trans fats, cholesterol, and sodium is linked to an increased risk of heart disease. On the other hand, a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and plant-based protein sources can lower the risk of heart disease.
Adopting a vegan diet can be an effective strategy for promoting heart health. A vegan diet excludes all animal products, including meat, dairy, eggs, and honey. While a vegan diet can be low in certain essential nutrients, it can be nutritionally adequate if well-planned. Read on as we share vegan heart-healthy foods that can help reduce the risk of heart disease.
7 Vegan heart-healthy foods for better health:
1. Leafy greens
Leafy greens like spinach, kale, collard greens, and Swiss chard are packed with vitamins, minerals, and fiber. They are also rich in antioxidants, compounds that protect cells from oxidative stress and inflammation, both contributing factors to heart disease. Leafy greens are also high in nitrates, which can lower blood pressure, a risk factor for heart disease.
Berries like strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries are potent sources of antioxidants. They are rich in flavonoids, which improve blood flow, lower blood pressure, and reduce inflammation. Berries are also low in calories and high in fiber, making them an excellent snack for weight management.
3. Whole grains
Whole grains like brown rice, quinoa, oats, and barley are high in fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. They also contain phytochemicals, compounds that can protect against heart disease. Whole grains can lower cholesterol levels, reduce blood pressure, and prevent insulin resistance, all risk factors for heart disease.
Legumes like lentils, chickpeas, black beans, and kidney beans are excellent sources of plant-based protein, fiber, and antioxidants. They can lower cholesterol levels, reduce blood pressure, and improve insulin sensitivity. Eating legumes regularly can lower the risk of heart disease.
5. Nuts and seeds
Nuts like almonds, walnuts, and pecans, and seeds like chia, flax, and hemp are rich in heart-healthy fats, fiber, and minerals. They are also a good source of plant-based protein. Eating nuts and seeds regularly can lower cholesterol levels, reduce inflammation, and improve blood sugar control.
Avocado is a unique fruit that is high in heart-healthy fats, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. It contains monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats that can lower cholesterol levels. Avocado can also improve blood pressure and reduce inflammation, both risk factors for heart disease.
Garlic is a potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory food that can lower cholesterol levels and blood pressure. It can also improve blood vessel function and prevent blood clot formation, all contributing factors to heart disease.
In conclusion, a vegan diet that includes these heart-healthy foods can promote cardiovascular health and reduce the risk of heart disease. However, a well-balanced vegan diet is essential to ensure an adequate intake of all essential nutrients. Consult a registered dietitian or healthcare provider before adopting a vegan diet or making any dietary changes.
Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for a qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.
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