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Heart Healthy Diet: It’s Me or the Donut

February 3, 2011

So, I wrote yesterday about taking some blood tests. The results show I have borderline high cholesterol although the HDL and Triglycerides are good. That means more EXERCISE and a HEART HEALTHY DIET. I already tuned up my bike and the donut shop is off-limits.

The Mayo Clinic – 8 Steps to Prevent Heart Disease

Here is a sampling:

Limit Unhealthy Fats: Choose these over butter, & hydrogenated margarine and shortening. I am already doing this.

* Olive oil
* Canola oil
* Margarine that’s free of trans fats
* Cholesterol-lowering margarine, such as Benecol, Promise active or Smart Balance.

Choose Low Fat Protein Choices: I need to make some adjustments here like eggs, spareribs and bacon. I rarely eat fried foods. Foods to Avoid:

* Full-fat milk and other dairy products
* Organ meats, such as liver
* Egg yolks
* Fatty and marbled meats
* Spareribs
* Cold cuts
* Frankfurters, hot dogs and sausages
* Bacon
* Fried or breaded meats

Eat More Fresh Fruits and Veggies: Fresh is my choice, but need to eat more of them.

* Fresh or frozen vegetables and fruits
* Low-sodium canned vegetables
* Canned fruit packed in juice or water

Select Whole Grains. I eat a good quality bread but am weak on bakery goods.

* Whole-wheat flour
* Whole-grain bread, preferably 100 percent whole-wheat or 100 percent whole-grain bread
* High-fiber cereal with 5 or more grams of fiber a serving
* Whole grains such as brown rice, barley and buckwheat (kasha)
* Whole-grain pasta
* Oatmeal (steel-cut or regular)
* Ground flaxseed

Reduce Salt Intake: I already do this. These are the no-nos….

* Table salt
* Canned soups and prepared foods, such as frozen dinners
* Tomato juice
* Soy sauce

Eating ham, bacon, or processed meats are also high in sodium.

Eat Less – Portions Matter. I am ok here, but less is more, so I will improve in this area too.

A serving size is a specific amount of food, defined by common measurements such as cups, ounces or pieces. For example, one serving of pasta is 1/2 cup, or about the size of a hockey puck. A serving of meat, fish or chicken is 2 to 3 ounces, or about the size and thickness of a deck of cards. Judging serving size is a learned skill. You may need to use measuring cups and spoons or a scale until you’re comfortable with your judgment.

Create Daily menus: I plan out from day to day to suit my budget.

You know what foods to feature in your heart-healthy diet and which ones to limit. Now it’s time to put your plans into action.

Allow An Occasional Treat
Allow yourself an indulgence every now and then. A candy bar or handful of potato chips won’t derail your heart-healthy diet. But don’t let it turn into an excuse for giving up on your healthy-eating plan. If overindulgence is the exception, rather than the rule, you’ll balance things out over the long term. What’s important is that you eat healthy foods most of the time.

The alternatives are nuts, raisens, apples, etc. Good choices when you get a craving.

Source to read more at the Mayo Clinic, click here

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  1. February 4, 2011 at 2:10 pm
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