Eating for a healthy heart

Even if you already have a heart condition, a healthy diet can benefit your heart. Here are some tips to keep your heart healthy:

Eat plenty of fibre

This will lower your risk of heart disease. Foods which contain fibre include wholemeal bread, bran, oats and wholegrain cereals, skin-on-potatoes, and plenty of fruit and veg.

Eat 5 portions of fruit and vegetables per day

This will give you optimum levels of fibre, vitamins and minerals. Consider adding chopped fruit to your breakfast and including extra vegetables in your lunch and dinner, as well as choosing fruit and vegetables as snacks. 

Choose healthy fats

It's important to eat the right kind of fat. You can replace saturated fats (found in fatty meats, hard cheeses, butter) with small amounts of mono and polyunsaturated fats (found in avocados, olive oil, nuts, oily fish) and cut down on foods containing trans fats (found in fried takeaway foods, cakes, biscuits).

Cut down on salt

Adults should have less than 6g of salt a day in total – that's about one teaspoon. Watch out for high levels of salt in ready-made foods by checking food labels, and try adding less to your cooking at home. 

Drink less alcohol

By keeping your alcohol intake down, you'll reduce consuming excess calories, and avoid many health problems, including risks to your heart. 

Stay active 

Exercise is a very important part of keeping your heart healthy. There are plenty of things you can do to stay active and maintain fitness levels - whether it's by going for regular walks, or taking part in sports or an exercise class. 

 

If you are worried about your heart or your health in general, always speak to your GP first. 


 

Useful contacts:

British Heart Foundation
Phone: 0300 330 3311
Web:www.bhf.org.uk