Top 11 Heart-Healthy Foods

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Heart Disease
One clue that a food has some trans fat in it is the phrase "partially hydrogenated" in the ingredient list. For a totally unsweetened take, try cacao nibs. If you're looking for an eating plan that closely follows the tenets of anti-inflammatory eating, consider the Mediterranean diet, which is high in fruits, vegetables, nuts, whole grains, fish, and healthy oils. Flaxseeds are small brown seeds that are high in fiber and omega-3 fatty acids. But don't go on a crash diet to see how quickly you can lose those pounds. With cardiac CT you are exposed to significant radiation. These juicy fruits have resveratrol, which helps keep platelets in your blood from sticking together.

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How to Prevent Heart Disease

Recently started low carb and sugar restricted diet triglycerides dropped from to , LDL dropped to without statins or other meds. HDL dropped to 29 on plant based diet and since changing to low carb rebounded to Sugar under much better control.

I eat lots of greens, seeds, nuts, fish, pasture raised meats, eggs and butter. When my sugar spikes I eat raw unpasteurized sheep cheese Roquefort from France and my sugar drops like a rock. Its thought that Roquefort cheese is the secret to the French longevity as blue veins in this cheese kill bacteria pneumonia chlamyedia which is believed to play a role in the development of arterial plaque.

My husband and I follow the paleo diet. We just had a female friend who suffered a major heart attack. Heart stopped multiple times. My question is— is there a paleo book that specifically addresses heart disease that I could offer her? He has many testimonials and it actually works.

My father has CAD. I took Lipitor for 40 days and developed severe, debilitating muscle pain in my wrists, forearms and biceps. After 2 weeks off it I can start to pick up my 6 mo. So many health professionals and other sources, including your book keep telling me to drastically reduce my CHO consumption and go full Paleo. I am an amateur road bike racer and think this lifestyle has allowed me to keep my other numbers low but a high CHO diet had always been a prevalent in my lifestyle.

I believe that fat is great. I know for a fact low-fat foods, vegetable oils, and all the like is crap. What do you think about the NDC sponsoring this study? Wow, Just ran into this website looking for evidence of antiaging with the rice diet. I know high carb works, because all of my life I have been told of the glories of high protirn, which hurt me as an athlete when I was younger, since mom firmly believed in high protein.

Now that I am older, Actually all the fat was clogging my arteries and making things much worse. In short, you are lying to people.. Erica and Bill, you are so right. I had been on a low fat primarily plant based diet for the best part of 30 years. It had served me well and I knew nothing but good health and vitality during this time. I took up bodybuilding, and was persuaded to add significant amounts of animal protein to my diet.

OMG, after almost 2 years of this I had developed gout, felt terribly lethargic, in fact I felt absolutely awful. I dropped all animal products and processed oils. Within days the gout had eased and I have since proceeded to get my life and health back on track. The change in my health and outlook is nothing short of miraculous. I do not think your gout is related to the amount of meat you consume but you need to check what purines you are consuming and maybe add cherries to your daily diet to lower your uric acid.

Oh, I can vouch for increased meat intake bringing on gout attacks. I eat very little meat. Eggs and dairy are exceptions. Eggs actually are neutral foods and dairy has been shown to lower uric acid.

I also use Black Cherry Extract. This is the diet I am on, I cannot call it a diet but rather a way of life now! I feel great, cheers to Dr. Esselstyn and Dr Campbell. It has been life changing.. There are many that have almost the same diets, the primary focus on whole plant-based products and limiting animal products…Just like in the five Blue Zones containing an extra ordinary high number of people long-lived and over He is not a proponent of low-fat like Ornish and Esselstyn. Of course, with their diets they did not build heart disease so had no reason to reverse it.

More studies are needed, anyone denying that knows little about nutrition. Thank you so much for writing this article. I too just received my results and everything else seemed fine, except for the LDL-P. I was cooking with lard, using more butter for my brain from the Grain Brain book and taking in extra coconut oil like many others have been doing for 3 yrs. I printed out this article for my functional doctor as well. It seems that there are more of us out there that could use some advice.

We a grateful for your work and research. Have started a drastic nutrition change. It is a tough start. How can I unblock my artery. Ive started taking fish oil, magnesium, VC and eating heaps of veggies and zero trans and sata fats. There is only one diet that has been clinically shown to reverse atherosclerosis — a low fat vegan diet.

How does progressing heart disease sound? Eating saturated fat like the people in this forum propose will do nothing but worsen the problem. Look at what Drs. Esselstyn and Ornish have accomplished with their dietary recommendations. I would also start drinking pomegranate juice. I drink a cup a day. Get exercise every day. A daily brisk walk is ideal. I do not know where you get your information but Ornish and Esselstyn with low-fat diets are not the only doctors to reverse heart disease.

I am not trying to indicate that the final science on this is complete. Did Fuhrman or Pritikin publish their findings? Furhman may allow small amounts of lean animal foods but his ideal diet, the one he advertises and personally follows himself is a vegan diet.

He too recommends a VLF vegan diet. Esselstyn is stricter as his reversal diet is a VLF vegan diet. Please provide the source s that show Pritikin and Fuhrman have reversed heart disease. If I provide the sources for Fuhrman and Pritikan reversing heart disease would I have to read it to you guys? BTW, Pritikan had heart disease and when he died suicide his arteries were clear and free of heart disease.

Fuhrman lives in my area — I have seen phenomenal turn-arounds of all kinds of diseases, including heart disease among people in our area who go to him as patients. One sample publication is: Fuhrman J, Singer M. American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine. October 15, doi: Thanks for writing this series. Heart Disease, Obesity, Diabetes… these are all things that can be avoided with the right diet, exercise, and smart supplementation as insurance against imperfect eating.

We need more education, actually more wisdom when it comes to nutrition and health. I had been on a very high carb diet and had low HDL and high triglycerides. TC was , so decided to try the Paleo diet. Right away my HDL soared to 67 within 2 months which was great. I always had a high carb, low fat diet and was always puzzled why everything was normal except my HDL which was under Now a year after being Paleo, my results are not so good. But what was concerning was that my small diameter LDL was 56 and over 40 was high risk.

The very thing Paleo is supposed to reverse? So maybe I went to much to the other side and getting an NMR profile done for baseline peuposes. I have been where you are Rory. After about 8 months on Paleo, my cholesterol went up to It seems I need the carbs because my thyroid TSH was higher at 4. Maybe hypothyroid is going on here for me, and I am slim at almost 10 stone so the doctor does not recognise a problem.

I am trying the Ray Peat way this last little while and am hoping to get my numbers re-tested soon, and hope they are better. Are you actually surprised that eating more animal fat and protein was going to do anything but adversely affect your cholesterol? Looking at all these LP-IR scores — mine is I have a father on dialysis and an older brother who is diabetic. I know I have the potential to become diabetic because I monitor my blood sugars and have seen some crazy numbers and fluctuations.

This worries me a bit. This is a great article about heart health. But I would have liked to see some mention of oral health. There have been hundreds of studies done linking oral health and heart disease.

If you improve your oral health, your outlook for heart disease is much better. A product such as the Beam Brush can improve your oral health literally before your eyes. Find out more at http: Do you have specific recommendations about the type of meat people should be eating?

There is so much contradictory information out there, hard to know what to believe. I have been on a low carb diet for 3 years now and on Paleo for about 6 months now. So what is the answer? It seems there is no definitive answer for the high LP a. The more I read about this the more confused I become. I think the treatment to bring down LP a is more risky that just leaving it alone, especially if you have pattern A LDL.

I suppose I could be wrong about this but there is really no one for me to turn to for answers. Thank you, Chris — you have directly and concisely answered the question I have had for a year. Now to figure out how to transition to Mediterranean Paleo — I already eat a fair amount of fruit and starch, and mainly have to reduce dairy fat. What a great post, I wish the mainstream media would offer solution orientated advice like this! A few years ago I was told I had a high risk of heart disease due to my weight being out of control.

This was the catalyst I needed to turn my life around; through physical activity and eating healthy my life has completely flipped. My question is this: Maybe a closing chapter regarding cardiovascular disease detection would be useful. What other viable detection methods are there that a layperson at risk with a high LDL-P could pursue with their MD before an entire lifestyle change is made or statins prescribed?

The associated high blood serum cholesterol is an attempt to partially correct for this defect. The essay is hypothesizing. I am absolutely thrilled to say I do every single one of these things. I am so happy my mother instilled such good habits in me at such a young age! It is something, but it is small. For patients needing just a little help, this seems like a good option. Another option I came across is Red yeast rice.

One study found that 2. Apparently it contains Lovastatin, but in a much lower dose than is used in Statin therapy. Finally, I found a little bit of info about Berberine, which is mostly used in combination with Red yeast rice, but seems to have effects by itself too.

For someone with further to go, adding these small effects together could be an effective option. We have been trying to do a more Mediterranean type paleo diet, but it takes some time to undo the WAPF approach that I have been using for the past 13 years, as it works well for me, but perhaps too high in sat fat for him Anyway, he started 1.

Do you know anything about the mechanism of action for the berberine? I have read that is really helps with blood sugar control, but just wondering how that works on a physiological level.. The title talks about prevention and reversal of coronary artery disease, but i did not see anything that directly discussed reversal.

For example, for reversal do you need to be at a lower LDL-P level than for prevention? Should you rather follow one dietary approach over another for reversal?

An overall question remains as to whether it can be reversed. While improvement in IMT has been shown, there is no similar consistent data with regard to coronary arteries that I am aware of.

Is the second one supposed to be LDL-C? After going paleo, my cholesterol and LDL-P skyrocketed. I am otherwise healthy, except I need to use bioidentical sex hormones. I am going to adopt a more Mediterranean paleo diet, add more soluble fiber, and learn about which foods to eat containing more monounsaturated fat than saturated fat. You are a blessing! Chris, Thanks so much for this great series. In your practice, have you noticed that reducing a certain type of saturated fat yields better results for people with genetically-driven high LDL-P?

After reading this post, I feel a sense of satisfaction to all my sacrifices for a healthy lifestyle. Great posts on CVD! Thank you very much for your work and mainly for share your knowledge! Are there particular foods you would recommend for this? So far, it seems like sugar and polyunsaturated oils are the only things that succeed in making me gain weight, but I know that is not good.

It is certainly not good for heart health, as your post explains. Any advice would be appreciated. I can definitely relate! How is your gut health? In the absence of other health issues or high levels of chronic stress, I think to gain weight you probably just need to eat more food!

Dairy too, if you tolerate it well. People who are overweight can lose and people who are underweight can gain. And Alyssa is correct. Eat more fat — healthy fats — definitely.

Eat real whole nutritious foods. I was blessed with a Fibromyalgia diagnosis and you can heal the body. In fact, there was a recent Success story at MDA about someone who gained healthy weight months after starting Primal.

You can search that, too. Thanks so much for your advice! And I have been trying to do more gut friendly eating. I started fermenting vegetables, and my my digestive tract has really improved. They taste better than macadamias, imo. Cashews have much lower n-6 than almonds, but are not nearly as low net carb as most nuts. Thank you very much for this. I was wondering what natural therpaies as mentioned under genetics you have found to be effective to reduce LDL particle number.

Are one of these more accurate? There are several nutrients that do affect cholesterol levels in most people; soluble fiber is one example, and vegetable oil is another. I understand there is an effect but was trying to get a clearer idea of how it worked. If most of the cholesterol in you bloodstream is being created by your body in response to some need, how does a food item raise or lower it?

Is that your term used exclusively for people who are hypercholesterolemic? A former colleague of mine was truly hypercholesterolemic. Both are on lipid-lowering drugs. Years ago while experimenting with a LCHF diet it went up to 6. A low fat vegetarian diet brought it down to In my case saturated fat most definitely raises my cholesterol. Given my numbers and how my body responds to saturated fat would you define me as a hyperresponder?

What you said about cholesterol is totally false and you need to review a complete study. Cholesterol in the diet does impact blood levels but below the to levels that so many studies like to look at.

Well, it appears it is important what you eat if that is the case. What about reversing heart disease for the majority of adults that already have it?

The Paleo diet is a sham and does not reverse heart disease. Most adults would do far better studying Drs Ornish, Esselstyn, Fuhrman and others that focus on whole plant-based diets.

AND all my sex hormones are super low, and cortisol is high. Chris, one good source for mono-unsaturated fats you may not be aware of is purified Omega 7.

Why do you suggest that they increase it here? No one escapes in the end—eventually the traditional western diet guarantees some form of disease in all of us. While it may not be heart disease at the moment, eventually it will be or hypertension, diabetes, stroke, obesity, gall stones, diverticulitis, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, multiple sclerosis, or a greater likelihood of breast, prostate, colon, ovarian and uterine cancers.

Even erectile dysfunction and dementia. The world famous Framingham Heart Study now approaching its 60th year looked at 1, people at age 50 who had normal blood pressure. But there is something that you can do now to stop the cascading events that occur in the body and lead to disease.

You can change your diet and begin safeguarding your health for the future. The protein available in a diet of whole grains, legumes, fruit and beans, and red, yellow and green vegetables is adequate to nourish even professional champion athletes such as those who compete in the iron man races, professional football, mixed marshal arts, track and field.

The extra protein is truly unnecessary and has the potential for harm if it contains animal protein. Calcium — Where do I get calcium? Calcium supplementation is unnecessary. There is more than adequate calcium in a plant- based diet of whole grains, legumes and grains and especially the green leafy vegetables.

Vitamins — What Vitamins should I take? If eating copious amounts of leafy green vegetables, a multi vitamin is unnecessary. Have blood tested for Vitamin D level and supplement as appropriate to maintain blood level in the low normal range.

Fish Oil — Should I take fish oil? Fish oil is not essential. Fish get their omega 3 from plants. It is difficult to be deficient in Omega 3 if eating tablespoons of flax seed meal or chia seeds and green leafy vegetables at several meals.

There is also research that suggests that those on plant based nutrition become highly efficient in their own manufacture of omega 3. Patients on fish oil are also at increased risk for bleeding, and studies now indicate they are of no benefit for heart disease patients.

Avoid flax seed oil. Olive oil , canola oil, coconut oil, Sunflower oil, soybean oil, peanut oil, any oil — Which oil is best? They injure the endothelium, the innermost lining of the artery, and that injury is the gateway to vascular disease. All oil is also empty calories. Lotions with oil — Is it all right to use lotions with oil on my skin?

However tablespoons of flax seed meal or chia seeds daily is perfectly acceptable. Family history — I have a bad family history? Our data indicates even those with strong family history when eating plant based are protected from vascular disease.

Family history loads the gun, but lifestyle pulls the trigger. Nuts — What about nuts? I hear so many different opinions? As nuts are a rich source of saturated fats, my preference is no nuts for heart disease patients. That also eliminates peanuts and peanut butter even though peanuts are officially a legume. For those with established heart disease to add more saturated fat that is in nuts is inappropriate.

For people with no heart disease who want to eat nuts and avocado and are able to achieve a cholesterol of and LDL of 80 or under without cholesterol lowering drugs, some nuts and avocado are acceptable. Chestnuts are the one nut, very low in fat, it is ok to eat.

Seeds sunflower, pumpkin, sesame, etc. Are seeds ok to eat? Some seeds baked in bread or crackers is acceptable. Coconut water — Is it all right to drink coconut water? Prostate cancer — Does plant based eating help prostate cancer? Prostate cancer is greatly lessoned by plant- based nutrition as best exemplified by the report confirming by autopsy 18 deaths in the entire nation of Japan. Egg whites , fat free milk, yogurt — So What is wrong with egg whites, fat free yogurt, skim milk? Egg whites, fat free milk and yogurt are ALL animal protein, and animal protein injures the lining of the arteries.

Cholesterol Number fluctuation — Why do my cholesterol numbers fluctuate? Fluctuation of cholesterol is normal. It is nice to have it fluctuating in a range that would indicate you are unlikely to have cardio vascular problems.

Losing weight — What can I do to stop losing too much weight? Eat more whole grains and beans. Tired , no energy — Why am I tired and have no energy since eating plant-based? If you feel tired and lacking in energy, be sure you are eating enough calories.

You have eliminated the high calorie foods: Also exercise because you need to use energy to make energy. Depression also contributes to lack of energy. But first of all eat more. Triglycerides — Why did my triglycerides go up? If your triglycerides are high, cut back on simple carbohydrates, which would include alcohol, wine, beer, white flour products, sugars including dried fruit, honey maple syrup, molasses, rich desserts, fruit juice or an excess of fruit.

It is not uncommon for HDL to fall when consuming plant based nutrition. Do not be alarmed. The capacity of HDL to do its job has been shown recently by scientific research that there is no relationship between the capacity of the HDL molecule to function optimally and its blood level. Recent research has confirmed that the HDL molecule can be injured and weakened when one is ingesting a pro inflammatory western diet and conversely it appears despite a lower than normal level to be optimized by anti inflammatory plant based-nutrition.

LDL is the bad cholesterol. The closer it can be to or lower, the better.

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