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How to Lower Risk of Heart Disease With Diet

by Katrina Josey
  • Overview

    Heart disease is currently the number one cause of death in the United States. Fortunately, some cases can be prevented with proper diet and exercise. However. with so many unhealthy food choices available, it can be hard to eat the right thing or to even know what the healthy choices are. Here's a guide on what dietary choices you can make in an effort to prevent heart disease.
 
  • Step 1

    Choose lean cuts of meat at the grocery store and in restaurants. At the grocery store, look for ground beef packages labeled as "lean." Select cuts of meat with "loin" in them. Some examples are sirloin and tenderloin. Be aware that more marbling in a meat is a sign of higher fat content. Saturated fat, which is found in animal fats, contributes to deposits in the arteries that leads to heart disease.
  • Step 2

    Eat whole foods. As much as possible, eat foods in their least processed form. This will help you avoid a diet high in fat and salt. These ingredients are added to processed foods to enhance taste and increase shelf life, but they're not good for keeping your body healthy. Diets high in fat a salt lead to high blood pressure and heart disease.
  • Step 3

    Choose a breakfast cereal high in soluble fiber. Some good sources of soluble fiber include oatmeal and oat bran. Soluble fiber helps to lower cholesterol levels that contribute to heart disease.
  • Step 4

    Drink skim or 1 percent milk instead of 2 percent or whole milk. Two percent milk is high in fat, with more than 30 percent of the total calories per serving coming from fat. One percent and skim milk have less than 30 percent of calories coming from fat. As a rule, all foods and drinks should have fewer than 30 percent of calories coming from fat in order to be considered heart-healthy and low-fat.
  • Step 5

    Replace vending machine snacks with fresh fruits and vegetables. Snacks in a vending machine tend to be high in fat and salt. Try slicing fresh fruits and vegetables at the beginning of the week. Separate them into snack baggies or containers so that you can just grab them and go. This will make it more likely that you will eat them later in the week when you're rushing out to start your work day.
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