Are you tired of hearing what you can’t eat for a healthy heart?? Get the scoop from Registered Dietitian Kim Hardin on what you can eat to boost your heart health and feel great this February!

There are plenty of foods you can be eating more of for a healthy heart. Research has shown that a healthy eating plan low in saturated and trans fat combined with a diet that includes fiber from whole grains can help lower cholesterol and may lower your risk for heart disease! Foods high in fiber include whole
wheat breads, pastas, cereals, oatmeal, beans, fruits and vegetables. The recommended amount of fiber per day is 25-30 gms per day.

High Fiber Ideas

Prunes are an excellent source of fiber. Try cutting them into tiny pieces and mix into yogurt, cookies, muffins, cereal or pancake mix. They can also be pureed (and can be purchased this way as well).

Try “old fashioned” oatmeal (not the instant kind). You can mix in recipes or make homemade oatmeal raisin cookies.

Add processed bran to cereal, peanut butter, applesauce, casseroles and ground meats – aim for a goal of 1-2 tablespoons each day

Whenever possible, pick whole grain breads, pastas, and rice over their white counterparts.

Choose vegetables with higher fiber content such as peas, corn, potatoes, broccoli, spinach, dried beans (for dips, soups, burritos etc). Aim for at least 3 servings per day (1 serving = 1/4 cup for young children)

Examples of fruits with higher fiber content include prunes, apricots, plums, raisins, cantaloupe, blueberries, and apples (with skin). Goal for day is 2 – 3 servings per day (1/2 cup or 1 small piece)

A fiber rich eating plan also provides a feeling of fullness which can lead
to an intake of fewer calories and thus may help with weight management.
Being overweight has been shown to increase your risk for heart disease. All you need to see an improvement in your cardiovascular health is a few pounds. As little as a 10% reduction in your weight may lower your risk for heart disease!

Other benefits include increasing your intake of some key nutrients when you eat fiber rich foods. B vitamins for metabolism and nervous system,
Magnesium for your bones and Selenium for your immune system.

As our grandmothers used to tell us,” An apple a day helps keep the doctor