Keep these 5 foods in your diet for heart-friendly snackingPosted on:17 September 2021, 19:00pm IST
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There are several factors that play a huge role in how healthy your heart is. There are some common risk factors like smoking, excess alcohol, or stress. But not many understand that a poor diet also affects your heart health. If you’re a heart patient, every bite counts — including the little ones between meals.
You may think cutting out snacks is the way to go, but no, it’s not the right way to deal with this issue. Eating at regular intervals is actually important to regulate your blood sugar levels and keep your metabolism on track throughout the day.
In fact, snacking is a great way to include foods that can help you lower your cholesterol, as long as you choose wisely. And just because you can’t snack on chips, fries, doughnuts, cakes, and cookies doesn’t mean you’re stuck with tasteless choices. Heart-healthy recipes don’t have to be bland or boring always.
You can enjoy delicious dishes that are packed with wholesome ingredients that will keep your heart strong, your tastebuds happy, and your tummy satisfied.
Here are five healthy snacks that are good for your heart health
Almonds are crunchy and delicious, and can be eaten without any worry. In fact, they are the best nuts to snack on, if you want to keep your heart health in check. In fact, if you are craving for cookies, namkeen, or chips between meals, go for almonds and satiate your hunger pangs.
In fact, according to a study, snacking on almonds may improve your heart health by leaps and bounds. The study published in the European Journal of Nutrition suggests that replacing popular snacks like biscuits, chips, and namkeen with almonds can improve endothelial function, a key indicator of cardiovascular health. Moreover, it lowers ‘bad’ cholesterol.
2. Chia seeds pudding
Chia seeds are highly nutritious, and come with an illustrious resume of health benefits. They also happen to be great for your heart health. If you want to maintain heart health, but can’t help your poor snacking habits, fret not! Chia seeds are here to rescue you. Being a superfood, chia seeds are loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, fibre, protein, magnesium, antioxidants, and phosphorus.
You can consume chia seeds in many ways, but we suggest you consume chia seeds in the form of a pudding. This recipe will not only keep your heart healthy, but will also help you with weight loss.
Here’s how you can prepare chia seeds pudding
Blend half a coconut and almond milk with one cup cubed watermelon, until completely smooth. Pour it into a bowl or glass, add chia seeds and maple syrup, and then stir well. Now, place it in the fridge overnight. On the next day, top it with your choice of colourful fruits like berries, bananas, apples, oranges, and nuts.
3. Brussels sprouts
Brussels sprouts is a crunchy veggie that may help you stay off several health issues such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart diseases, and diabetes.
A well-known clinical nutritionist Lovneet Batra suggests that brussels sprouts are high in fibre. Thus, they can prove to be beneficial for a person who is suffering from cardiovascular diseases. In fact, they are low in calories and fat, and contain multiple nutrients required by the body.
4. Muesli smoothie
This recipe of a muesli smoothie is full of nourishment, and can energise you for the day ahead.
To prepare a muesli smoothie, place muesli in a small bowl and cover it with three tablespoons of milk. Refrigerate muesli overnight. Add muesli, chopped banana, cinnamon powder, honey, and ice cubes to the blender. Blend the mixture till it forms a puree-like consistency. In the end, add peanut butter as a topping before you serve or drink the smoothie.
This recipe is full of protein, antioxidants, calcium, and fibre that helps you stay full for a longer duration of time, keeps your heart health in check, and positively affects your blood sugar and cholesterol levels. Try out this smoothie that balances your health and taste.
5. Apple with nut butter
An apple a day keeps a doctor away! We’ve all heard that. But is that really true? We have science to prove that. According to a study by the University of Reading in the United Kingdom—done along with the scientists at Fondazione Edmund Mach (FEM) Institute in Italy—the polyphenol and fibre in apples have the potential to reduce LDL (low-density lipoprotein, also known as bad cholesterol). LDL builds up in the arteries and can cause a heart attack or stroke.
Not only this, according to the Nurses’ Health Study—which is an epidemiological study that has been going on since 1976 in the United States—those who consumed an apple daily protected themselves against lung cancer as well as cardiovascular diseases.
Apple with peanut butter is an excellent heart-healthy snack, because peanut butter and apples are both high in fibre, which is great to maintain balanced blood sugar and cholesterol levels.
So ladies, snack on these foods without any guilt!