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The Best Foods To Prevent Cardiovascular Problems
There are so many health benefits to eating the fresh fruits and vegetables that we have available to us today. More and more grocery stores are offering organic products so it is getting easier to get and stay healthy.
There are two main areas that require your attention in order to avoid having a heart attack, stroke, or other cardiovascular issues and they are your blood pressure and your cholesterol. These vital statistics must be under control or they can quickly lead to more serious issues and possibly death. If you are already on medication, make sure you continue to take your pills as prescribed without skipping them. Take them exactly as your doctor has spelled it out on your instructions from the pharmacy.
In addition, there are foods you can add to your diet that can help you see better results with some of these health conditions. You may even be able to reduce the dosage that has been prescribed and eventually you might even be able to come off of your prescription altogether. Here are some suggestions as to foods that will help you become healthier.
1. Blood pressure
- Apples and Onions. Fresh vegetables and fruits have a good deal of oligomeric proanthocyanidins (OPCs) in them. These OPCs are free radicals that are able to be absorbed rapidly into the bloodstream and have been found to qualify as a natural supplement in reducing blood pressure levels. They help promote good circulation and healthy veins. Two foods that have high levels of OPCs are apples and onions. Onions should be eaten raw in order to reap the blood pressure benefits.
- Flax seeds. Freshly crushed flax seeds will give you the most effective use in lowering your blood pressure because they include two major kinds of essential fatty acids. The flax seeds contain 19 percent omega-6s and 48 percent of alpha-linolenic acids which are a precursor to omega-3. You can easily include crushed flaxseed into your diet by adding them to your morning smoothie, your favorite cereal, or your afternoon yogurt.
- Dark Chocolate. This is one supplement that won’t be too hard to add to your daily diet. Before you start searching for a dark form of your favorite gooey candy bar, know that it is the darkest, most pure chocolate that is the most beneficial in reducing your blood pressure and providing you with true health benefits. A chocolate bar that is at least 70 percent cocoa is your best bet as some of these dark bars become a little bitter the higher their cocoa content is. Eating one ounce a day will provide you with benefits without ruining your diet plan.
- Seaweed. There is a seaweed that comes from Japan called Wakame. Even if you do not like seaweed, you may want to check out what Wakame can do for you so that you may be able to avoid taking blood pressure medications. If you eat 3 grams of this seaweed every day for four weeks, you could see your systolic blood pressure levels drop by 14 points and your diastolic numbers cut by around 5 points. There is Ecklonio cava, a type of red-brown algae from Asia that contributes to dilating the blood vessels and working to reduce high blood pressure naturally.
- Avocados, Coldwater Fish, and Olive Oil. What do these three foods have in common? They all have omega-3 fats in them and they increase the production of nitric oxide, or NO. NO makes sure that your arteries are dilated correctly and redirects the stress effects that causes high blood pressure in the first place. You can incorporate salmon as your cold-water fish choice – make it wild caught Alaskan – a couple of times a week, along with sardines a couple of time a week as well.
- Celery. Don’t underestimate the power of celery to reduce your blood pressure. It contains apigenin and eases the blood vessels lowering the pressure. Try adding four stalks of celery plus eight teaspoons of celery juice up to three times a day and you will see immediate results in your blood pressure numbers. You can also take a supplement of 1,000 mg two times a day.
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- Red wine. Recent tests have shown that consuming the red grapes that are used to make Roja wine can reduce your bad cholesterol levels by 9% in people with no issues with their cholesterol. There was a12% reduction in those who already suffered from high cholesterol.
- Oats. Not only can switching your breakfast over to oatmeal reduce your LDL or bad cholesterol by 5.3%, it can accomplish this in just 6 weeks. Oats contain beta-glucan which draws the LDL to it and then your body is able to eliminate it through your bowel movements. Enjoy a warm bowl of oatmeal topped with some low-fat milk, fresh raspberries, and a touch of brown sugar or honey.
- Fatty fish. The same fish that can lower your blood pressure with their bounty of omega-3 fats, salmon, herring, and even sardines, can also lower your bad cholesterol and increase your good cholesterol by up to 4%.
- Tea. There are benefits from drinking just about any kind of tea. Green tea is known as a vital antioxidant and is able to lower LDL levels. In just 3 weeks drinking black tea was found to drop lipids by around 10%, reducing the chances of suffering from heart disease.
- Nuts. One serving of nuts is equal to 1.5 ounces or a shot glass full. Walnuts are among the best nuts to ward off heart problems. When people in a study consumed a serving of whole walnuts every day for a month, their cholesterol dropped by 5.4% with their LDL numbers down by 9.3%. If you’re not fond of walnuts, cashews and almonds can give you the same results.
- Garlic. The benefits of garlic have long been recognized. The problem is being able to consume 4 cloves of garlic each day. You may want to try a supplement if you aren’t able to take this food in on a fresh basis daily but the rewards are hard to ignore. Garlic is able to lower blood pressure, reduce the chances of blood clots, and it blocks the cholesterol particles that stick to the artery walls creating plaque in the initial stages.
- Spinach. The benefits of spinach are plenty but now you can add its effects on warding off heart attacks. A half cup of baby spinach helps artery walls eliminate the chances of products that can clog them and raise cholesterol levels.