Tags: Healthy Tips for a Happy Heart, be well, be well with big y, tips, healthy heart, heart, heart disease

Healthy Tips for a Happy Heart

Author: be well™ with Big Y® Registered Dietitian Team

Imagine having the power to maintain a strong, healthy heart and stop heart disease in its tracks. The good news: you possess this superpower! While heart disease continues to be the leading killer among men and women in the United States, it remains a preventable diagnosis for many.

Check out this video for 5 top tips for a more upbeat lifestyle.


1. Add color with fruits and vegetables

Make vibrant produce the center of every meal, whether utilizing fresh, frozen, canned, dried or 100% juice varieties. Fruits and vegetables provide an abundant source of beneficial vitamins and minerals, plus fiber and protective plant compounds called phytochemicals to keep your heart in tip-top shape.



2. Get the whole benefit with whole grains

Compared to refined grains, like white rice and traditional pasta, whole grains contain all the layers of the grain. This means you’ll benefit from more heart-healthy nutrition, like fiber, B vitamins and trace minerals, when enjoying whole grain foods like wild rice, popcorn and whole grain granola.



3. Pump up with plant protein

In addition to lean, animal-based proteins you may enjoy, make it a point to incorporate plant-based protein sources into weekly meals. Beans, nuts, seeds, lentils, nut butters and soy foods help reduce your intake of solid saturated fats while contributing more fiber and phytochemicals.



4. Focus on liquid fats

Swapping solid fats like butter, coconut oil and shortening for liquid fats — like olive oil, canola oil and fats from avocado, seafood, nuts and seeds — is an easy way to cut the risk of heart disease while improving cholesterol and triglyceride levels.



5. Say no to stress and yes to sleep

Experiencing too much stress may lead to increased blood pressure, inactivity and not-so-great food choices over time. Likewise, not getting enough sleep each night (experts recommend 7-9 hours) may put you at higher risk for high blood pressure, heart disease and even diabetes. Practice stress-releasing activities, like exercising, reading or listening to an inspirational podcast, to calm your mind and body and prepare you for better sleep.

Published 1/4/2021