Foods our Hearts will Love

Foods our Hearts will Love
As we get into February we are inundated with sugary treats to show our love and affection for our spouse, friends and family. A better way to celebrate Heart Health month and Valentine’s Day is to eat or make some heart healthy treats and meals for your loved one. Salmon. A great special meal for the special day. Full of omega-3 fatty acids, wild-caught salmon (about two 6oz servings weekly) helps reduce systemic inflammation and risk of developing atherosclerosis, hypertension and stroke, according to Dr Josh Axe. Omega-3s also help normalize heart rhythms and lower blood pressure. Pumpkin seeds. High in magnesium which is an important electrolyte that helps the heart fire on all cylinders and not skip a beat. Enjoy them low temp roasted, sprinkle them on a salad or soup for a little crunch. You could also chop them in a food processor and use for a breading for the salmon above or any white fish. Then on to dessert! Raw organic cocoa powder. The flavanols lower blood pressure, reduce the risk of stroke and act as antioxidants to prevent inflammation. This doesn’t mean have a big ol milk chocolate bar. You need to make a healthy treat with 100% cocoa powder and maybe some honey or other natural sweetener. Raspberries. A half cup of these pretty berries provide plenty of phytonutrients and antioxidants for decreasing inflammation and preventing heart disease. Put them on a healthy chocolate pudding, in a smoothie, on top a salad or eat them plain. Chia Seeds. When prepared right these little guys are heart friendly and good for your digestion among other benefits like a source of protein. It’s best to soak them or make them in a dish with a non-dairy milk/liquid. Chia seeds’ ability to reverse inflammation, regulate cholesterol and lower blood pressure make it extremely beneficial to consume for heart health. Also, by reversing oxidative stress, someone is less likely to develop atherosclerosis when he or she regularly consumes chia seeds. Almonds. They are a great snack or topping to the healthy snack above. Good source of fiber to help with blood sugar spikes. They are packed with healthy monounsaturated fats which we need.