Eat Like A Queen
Louisiana has one of the highest per capita rates for heart disease in the nation partly because of unhealthy diet and lifestyle habits. Is there one magic food that we can add to our diets to help prevent heart disease? It may not be that simple, but by adding a variety of heart healthy foods to your daily diet, you can reduce your risk of heart disease.
See the top 25 healthy food choices you can make when at the grocery store, and watch WAFB-Channel 9's 2012 broadcast of Katheryn Rothkamm's visit from the "Pantry Police," who showed her pros and cons of items readily available to her family:
Top 25 Healthy Food Choices
When making your grocery list, here are the top 25 heart healthy foods to keep in mind, remembering that the more natural the foods, the healthier they are. We've also included some fun ways to use the foods:
1. Salmon (Omega-3 fatty acids) - Grill salmon with a yummy rub or marinade. Save a chunk to chop for a pasta or salad later on.
2. Flaxseed - ground (Omega-3 fatty acids; fiber, phytoestrogens) - Ground flaxseed hides easily in all sorts of foods -- yogurt parfaits, morning cereal, homemade muffins, or cookies.
3. Oatmeal (Omega-3 fatty acids; magnesium; potassium; folate; niacin; calcium; soluble fiber) - Top hot oatmeal with fresh berries. Oatmeal-and-raisin cookies are a hearty treat.
4. Black or Kidney Beans (B-complex vitamins; niacin; folate; magnesium; omega-3 fatty acids; calcium; soluble fiber) - To give soup or salad a nutrient boost, stir in some beans.
5. Almonds (Plant omega-3 fatty acids; vitamin E; magnesium; fiber; heart-favorable mono- and polyunsaturated fats; phytosterols) - Mix a few almonds (and berries) into low-fat yogurt, trail mix, or fruit salads.
6. Walnuts (Plant omega-3 fatty acids; vitamin E; magnesium; folate; fiber; heart-favorable mono- and polyunsaturated fats; phytosterols) - Walnuts add flavorful crunch to salads, pastas, cookies, muffins, even pancakes.
7. Red wine (Catechins and reservatrol or flavonoids) - Toast your good health - but in moderation! A glass of red wine could improve "good" HDL cholesterol.
8. Tuna (Omega-3 fatty acids; folate; niacin) - Here's lunch: Salad greens, fresh fruit, canned tuna. Keep "Salad Spritzer" - a light dressing -- in your office fridge.
9. Tofu (Niacin; folate; calcium; magnesium; potassium) - Tasty tofu is easy: Thinly slice "firm" tofu, marinate several hours, grill or stir-fry.
10. Brown rice (B-complex vitamins; fiber; niacin; magnesium, fiber) - Microwavable brown rice makes a quick lunch. Stir in a few chopped veggies like broccoli, carrots or spinach.
11. Soy milk (Isoflavones or flavonoid; B-complex vitamins; niacin; folate, calcium; magnesium; potassium; phytoestrogens) - Soy milk is great over oatmeal or whole-grain cereal. Or, make a smoothie with soy milk.
12. Blueberries (Beta-carotene and lutein or carotenoids; anthocyanin, a flavonoid; ellagic acid, a polyphenol; vitamin C; folate; calcium, magnesium; potassium; fiber) - Cranberries, strawberries, raspberries are potent, too -- for trail mixes, muffins, salads!
13. Carrots (Alpha-carotene, a carotenoid; fiber) - Baby carrots are sweet for lunch. Sneak shredded carrots into spaghetti sauce or muffin batter.
14. Spinach (Lutein, a carotenoid; B-complex vitamins; folate; magnesium; potassium; calcium; fiber) - Choose spinach over lettuce for nutrient-packed salads and sandwiches.
15. Broccoli (Beta-carotene, a carotenoid; Vitamins C and E; potassium; folate; calcium; fiber) - Chop fresh broccoli into store-bought soup. For a veggie dip, try hummus, made from chickpeas.
16. Sweet potato (Beta-carotene, a carotenoid); vitamins A, C, E; fiber) - Microwave in a zip-lock baggie for lunch. Eat au naturale, or with pineapple bits.
17. Red bell peppers (Beta-carotene and lutein, carotenoids; B-complex vitamins; folate; potassium; fiber) -
Rub with olive oil, and grill or oven-roast until tender. Delicious in wraps, salads, sandwiches.
18. Asparagus (Beta-carotene and lutein, which are carotenoids; B-complex vitamins; folate; fiber) - Grill or steam slightly, then dress with olive oil and lemon. It's a pretty side dish too.
19. Oranges (Beta-cryptoxanthin, beta- and alpha-carotene, lutein or carotenoids and flavones or flavonoids; vitamin C; potassium; folate; fiber) - Got orange juice? Check out the new nutrient-packed blends.
20. Tomatoes (Beta- and alpha-carotene, lycopene, lutein or carotenoids; vitamin C; potassium; folate; fiber) - For a flavor twist, try oil-packed tomatoes in sandwiches, salads, pastas, pizzas.
21. Acorn squash (Beta-carotene and lutein or carotenoids; B-complex and C vitamins; folate; calcium; magnesium; potassium; fiber) - Baked squash is comfort food on a chilly day. Serve with sauteed spinach, pine nuts, raisins.
22. Cantaloupe (Alpha- and beta-carotene and lutein or carotenoids; B-complex and C vitamins; folate; potassium; fiber) - A fragrant ripe cantaloupe is perfect for breakfast, lunch, potluck dinners. Simply cut and enjoy!
23. Papaya (Beta-carotene, beta-cryptoxanthin, lutein or carotenoids; Vitamins C and E; folate; calcium; magnesium; potassium.) - Serve papaya salsa with salmon: Mix papaya, pineapple, scallions, garlic, fresh lime juice, salt and black pepper.
24. Dark chocolate (Reservatrol and cocoa phenols or flavonoids) - A truffle a day lowers blood pressure, but choose 70% or higher cocoa content.
25. Tea (Catechins and flavonols or flavonoids) - Make sun tea: Combine a clear glass jar, several tea bags, and hours of sunshine.