A heart-healthy eating
plan is full of foods that can lower your risk of heart disease, heart attack, and
stroke. This plan can help you stay at a healthy weight and manage cholesterol and
blood pressure. It is part of a heart-healthy lifestyle that includes regular activity and not smoking.
can choose from several eating plans to keep your heart healthy. They include the
American Heart Association diet, DASH diet, Mediterranean diet, and MyPlate plan.
eating is for everyone. It is not just for people who have heart problems or who are
at a high risk for heart problems. Heart-healthy eating focuses on adding more healthy
foods to your plan and cutting back on foods that aren't so good for you.
Eat more fruits
and vegetables and other high-fiber foods.
Choose foods that are low in saturated
fat and trans fat.
Eat at least two servings of fish each week. Oily fish,
which contain omega-3 fatty acids, are best. These fish include salmon, mackerel,
lake trout, herring, and sardines. If you cannot eat fish, you can also get omega-3
fats from omega-3 eggs, walnuts, flax seeds, and canola oil.
With the Dietary Guidelines for Americans plan, you eat and drink
the right amount for you. This plan recommends eating lots of fruits, vegetables,
whole grains, and low-fat or nonfat dairy products. You limit or avoid saturated fats,
trans fats, and added sugars. These guidelines are from the United States Department
of Agriculture (USDA).
American Heart Association (2006). Diet and lifestyle
recommendations revision 2006. Circulation, 114(1): 82-96. [Erratum in Circulation,
Eckel RH, et al. (2013). 2013 AHA/ACC guideline on lifestyle
management to reduce cardiovascular risk: A report of the American College of Cardiology/American
Heart Association Task Force on Practice Guidelines. Circulation. http://circ.ahajournals.org/content/early/2013/11/11/01.cir.0000437740.48606.d1.citation.
Accessed December 5, 2013.
Expert Panel on Integrated Guidelines for Cardiovascular
Health and Risk Reduction in Children and Adolescents (2011). Expert panel on integrated
guidelines for cardiovascular health and risk reduction in children and adolescents:
Summary report. Pediatrics, 128(Suppl 5): S213-S256.
National Heart, Lung,
and Blood Institute (2006). Your Guide to Lowering Your Blood Pressure With DASH (NIH
Publication No. 06-4082). Available online: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/public/heart/hbp/dash/new_dash.pdf.
SC, et al. (2011). AHA/ACCF secondary prevention and risk reduction therapy for patients
with coronary and other atherosclerotic vascular disease: 2011 update: A guideline
from the American Heart Association and American College of Cardiology Foundation.
Circulation, 124(22): 2458-2473. Also available online: http://circ.ahajournals.org/content/124/22/2458.full.
Department of Health and Human Services, U.S. Department of Agriculture (2015). 2015-2020
Dietary Guidelines for Americans 8th ed. http://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/2015/guidelines/.
Accessed January 12, 2016.
Staff Primary Medical ReviewerRakesh
K. Pai, MD - Cardiology, Electrophysiology Martin
J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine Kathleen Romito,
MD - Family Medicine E. Gregory Thompson, MD -
Internal Medicine Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine Specialist Medical ReviewerColleen
O'Connor, PhD, RD - Registered Dietitian Kathleen
M. Fairfield, MD, MPH, DrPH - Internal Medicine
This information does not replace the advice of a doctor.
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