There’s no better day than Valentine’s day to look after your heart! The bad news is that heart disease – and we’re not talking heart-break – accounts for nearly one-third of all deaths worldwide. The good news, however is that diet plays a major role in heart health. This means that you can eat (and drink) your way to good heart health. So in this blog we’ll look at what fruits are good for your heart. We’ll also take a look at antioxidants and how that affects your heart too.
Healthy Heart with Antioxidants
So what fruits are best for your heart and protects against stress and inflammation? Those high in antioxidants are key. Fruits such as berries such as strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and raspberries. The humble apple, apricots, bananas, oranges and grapefruit are great too.
What are antioxidants?
Antioxidants are molecules that fight free radicals in your body. The ‘bad guys’ are free radicals in your body – these are unstable atoms that can damage cells. These free radicals can be the main cause of illness and ageing. Your body has its own antioxidant defences to keep free radicals in check. However, it’s really important to top up those antioxidants from food sources. Food with high vitamins E and C, flavonoids (tea, red wine and citrus fruit), curcuminoids in turmeric and oleocanthal in extra virgin olive oil are great for antioxidants.
The Benefits of Antioxidants
Studies show that eating lots of berries (or drinking them – try our Berry-Go-Round) can reduce several risk factors for heart disease. For example, one study in 27 adults with metabolic syndrome (a precursor to heart disease) showed that drinking a beverage made of freeze-dried strawberries for eight weeks decreased “bad” LDL cholesterol by 11%. This study helps to demonstrate the power of fruit on your heart.
Blueberries For A Healthy Heart
Another study found that eating blueberries daily improved the function of cells that line the blood vessels. These vessels help control blood pressure and blood clotting . Blueberries are massively beneficial for the heart and the function of the body, why not check out Blueberry Thrill?
Additionally, an analysis of 22 studies showed an association between eating berries and a reduction in “bad” LDL cholesterol. As well as systolic blood pressure, body mass index and certain markers of inflammation.
How many daily servings of fruits and vegetables should you eat to keep your heart healthy?
Five servings a day (about two-and-a-half cups) appears to slightly lower your risk of heart attack and stroke. But pump up your produce intake to 10 servings a day, and you may lower your risk of cardiovascular disease by 28%. As well as lower your risk of premature death by 31%, according to a new review article. A smoothie in the morning, one in the afternoon will go a long way to helping boost your intake!
Might be of interest – How much fruit should you eat?
The findings, published online Feb. 22, 2017, by the International Journal of Epidemiology, were gleaned from 95 studies from around the world. The studies focused on looking at the effects of fruit and vegetable intake. Fruits and vegetables contain many other healthy nutrients, especially fibre, which seems to help lower cholesterol. As well as reduce blood pressure and improve blood vessel function. That may explain the study results, the authors say.
So What Fruits are Good For The Heart?
After our research on finding the best fruits for your heart it turns out all of them are. Enough fruit and veg in your daily lives increases the antioxidants in your body. Helping improve the bodies functions and help your heart stay strong.
Checkout our full range of smoothies to keep yours and your valentines heart strong.
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