Heart Healthy Foods

Woman drinking green tea

BY BARBARA SOBEL, MS, CNS, LDN. BARBARA IS A CLINICAL NUTRITIONIST AND CONTRIBUTING TEAM MEMBER OF BOSSA BARS, MENOPAUSE ENERGY BARS

As we enter mid-life, many of us may begin to struggle with high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or high lipids, all of which put us at increased risk for heart disease, our number one killer.

Read on for tips on what foods can help with these health challenges. Green tea, fish, and berries are all great options. Thankfully, dark chocolate is a go, so after a tasty dinner, you can follow with a Bossa Bar for dessert!

For High Blood Pressure, increase your intake of the following foods:

- legumes and lentils

- whole grains: oatmeal, oat bran, barley, or wheat

- hazelnuts, walnuts, or peanuts 

- cocoa (30g of dark chocolate per day)

- fiber 

- fruits: blueberries, tomatoes, watermelon, apricots, pink grapefruit, pomegranate juice

- seaweed

- garlic

- veggies: mushrooms, celery

For Metabolic Syndrome, which is a clustering of at least three medical conditions including abdominal obesity, high blood pressure, high blood sugar, high triglycerides, or low HDL (high density lipoprotein), add the following foods:

- green tea

- fiber from whole grains and legumes

- Omega-3 rich sources 

- cinnamon

- extra virgin olive oil

For High Lipids, add the following foods:

- fish

- green leafy vegetables

- tomatoes

- red wine (check with your doctor)

- dark chocolate 

- seeds and nuts

- garlic

- extra virgin olive oil

Of course adding foods is a wonderful way to increase your health. If you are are at risk for any of these diagnoses, reducing the following foods is even more important:

- sucrose and fructose

- processed and fast foods 

- saturated fats in dairy and meat

- soft drinks, caffeine, added sweeteners

- sodium

- for some, eggs and alcohol may also be an issue

Consult your doctor for more information, but if you still have questions, nutritionists like myself have worked with many clients with similar diagnosis and have expertise to help you. Schedule a consultation, or join the MenoLounge Live on Instagram @bossabarsformenopause when I am a guest, and get your questions answered. 

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