It is a great advantage to use heart-healthy meals for daily consumption because they are a way to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death in the United States.
A Good Diet to Protect Your Heart
Food plays a fundamental role in the control of heart health because it helps avoid the factors that promote the appearance of illnesses capable of harming the heart.
Eating foods that preserve the caloric balance, such as fruits and vegetables of different colors and in large quantities (4 cups), will keep us at a healthy weight. That, without forgetting the legumes and whole grains, at least three daily ounces.
Fish should be eaten as often as possible, including the oily ones, as well as poultry. Vegetable oil, preferably virgin olive oil or canola oil, should be used instead of solid fat such as lard or trans fats.
Nor should we forget the dairy products, fat-free or low-fat, and control the amount of salt, of which not more than 2300 mg/day should be consumed in any of its forms.
In the case of hypertensive, diabetic, or cardiac patients and those suffering from chronic renal diseases, the recommended consumption should not exceed 1,500 mg/day of salt.
Packaged products should be avoided because of their high sodium concentration. However, it is necessary to learn how to read and understand labels. They give the consumer the ability to quickly and easily compare packaged foods to select the most convenient for their health.
The kitchen is not the best place for routine habits, especially if they are not the healthiest for our well-being. We must learn to vary, as there are dozens of delicious and heart-healthy recipes. It’s just a matter of learning and starting to put them into practice.
The heart is a vital organ responsible for carrying the necessary blood to every corner of our body.
Carefully taking care of our diet, maintaining an adequate weight, not smoking, not overdoing it with alcohol, and practicing moderate physical exercise is essential for our heart’s health. Taking care of it depends only on ourselves and no one else.
This time, we present three heart-healthy recipes to enjoy eating and, at the same time, take care of our health, both for those who want to recover and those interested in prevention.
Rice and Fish Meatballs with Tomato and Cucumber Dressing
These are simple, well-flavored meatballs made of rice, preferably wholemeal, with fish meat, cooked in vegetable oil, very healthy.
1/2 pound of cooked rice, preferably whole grain
1 chopped hard-boiled egg
1 beaten egg white
1/2 pound of the fish of your choice in small batches
1 cup of whole wheat bread crumbs
1 tablespoon of chopped basil
1 tablespoon of chopped parsley
3 tablespoons of virgin olive oil
Green lettuce leaves as a dish decoration
1/2 cup fat-free plain yogurt
2 tablespoons of chopped basil
4 tomatoes cut into squares
1 cup cucumber, diced
1 lemon sliced for garnish
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Place the cooked rice in a bowl, add the chopped hard-boiled egg, fish and herbs, and season with black pepper.
- Keep this mixture in the refrigerator for 1 hour to provide flavor.
- Remove the mixture from the refrigerator and form meatballs of the desired size. Dip them in the beaten egg white and then in the breadcrumbs until they are completely coated.
- Fry them in a pan with the oil over medium heat, turning them over from time to time.
- To prepare the dressing, mix the yogurt and basil, add the tomatoes and cucumber and season with black pepper.
- Dress the cooked meatballs and garnish with lemon.
This dish can be served with a green salad.
Healthy Mediterranean diet style.
1 egg white
Whole wheat flour 2 boiled chicken breasts without the skin, cut into strips
1 teaspoon of virgin olive oil
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1-inch fresh ginger slice, peeled and grated
1 tablespoon of honey
1 carrot, sliced
1 red or green pepper, seeded, cut into cubes
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 tablespoon of soy sauce
2 tablespoons of vinegar
3 ounces of peas
4 spring onions cut into thin slices
- Lightly beat the egg white in a bowl.
- Add the chicken and whole wheat flour, cover with a napkin, and store in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
- Remove the chicken strips from the bowl and drain the excess mixture.
- Warm in a nonstick skillet with virgin olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic, ginger, and stir-fry for 30 seconds, then add the carrot and stir-fry for 1 minute.
- Add the chicken strips, peppers, broth, soy sauce, vinegar, and honey and stir to mix.
- Turn up the heat and bring to a boil. Then leave on very low heat. Add the peas and onions and cook for 2 minutes.
- In a cup, mix thoroughly 1/2 tablespoon of whole wheat flour with a spoonful of water and add it to the frying pan. Cook for about 1 minute, until the sauce thickens.
This dish can be served with brown rice.
Pumpkin is delicious and nutritious. It allows us to cook a soup of creamy texture to satisfy hunger without adding oil, butter, or cream in excess, so usual in soup creams.
1 medium-sized pumpkin
1 tablespoon of virgin olive oil
1 onion, diced
1 potato cut into quarters
2 cloves of garlic
3 cups homemade vegetable broth or prepared with unsalted stock cubes
1 handful of chopped chives
Salt and black pepper to taste
- Peel the pumpkin, remove the seeds, and cut the pulp into thick pieces.
- Heat the oil in a large pot, add the onion and simmer for a couple of minutes.
- Add the pieces of pumpkin and potato and stir to coat them in the oil.
- Cook over medium heat for 2 minutes. Add garlic and seasonings.
- Then add the broth and let it simmer for 25 minutes.
- Blend until very fine, lump-free, and creamy.
- To serve, add little chopped chives.
As a starter, it is unparalleled.
Diet alone is not enough. If we control our blood pressure, cholesterol, and triglycerides, as well as our blood sugar levels, stop smoking and become physically active to normalize our body weight, we will be reducing the risks of many heart-related diseases.