Dr.Kamini Silvarajan MD/AAAM

Editorial Board: Kamini Silvarajan MD/AAAM

Prevent Heart Risk Cardiac Diet

A cardiac diet is suggested by dietician to patients who are at a higher risk of suffering from high blood pressure, heart problems and obesity. The diet is planned in way to make the heart healthy and to prevent any risk to heart. One of the major enemies of heart is bad cholesterol and unhealthy fats. Certain fat products are made from monounsaturated fat which helps in decreasing the level of bad cholesterol in human body and it is allowed in a cardiac diet.

Low cholesterol diet is advised to patients suffering from heart diseases and in low cholesterol diet food product containing high amount of good cholesterol or HDL is allowed and food products rich in bad cholesterol or LDL (low density lipoproteins) is disallowed. 

Triglycerides are also fat products which are bad for health of heart and it should also be eliminated from diet. Bad cholesterol deposits in the arteries of human body and it can form plaque which makes the blood pumping difficult.

Different types of fats

Take polyunsaturated fat and monounsaturated fats: Polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats are beneficial for human being. Polyunsaturated fats can be taken from green leafy vegetables, seeds, fish and nuts. Monounsaturated fat is found in dairy products, olives, nuts and avocados.

Avoid Trans-fats: One should avoid intake of Trans-fats and saturated fats. Trans fats reduces the high density lipoprotein levels in blood and increase the low density lipoproteins in blood. 

Trans-fats are found in most of the pre packaged food products and it is also found in the fast food provided at restaurants. Saturated fats are found in creams, butter, ghee, cheese and coconut oil.

A cardiac diet should include the following:

  1. To reduce the level of bad cholesterol or LDL, more and more fresh fruits should be included in the diet. Fruits and vegetables such as cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, peas, soybeans, prunes, seeds, nuts and whole grains are rich in fibers and it should be taken.
  2. The diet should be low in sodium. Sodium intake should not be more than 4000 mg per day for a normal person and in any food item the sodium quantity should not be more than 140 mg. Intake of table salt in food and salty snacks should be reduced.
  3. The level of cholesterol intake should not be more than 200 mg in a day.
  4. One can take lean meat or fish. Reduce intake of animal meat high in fat.
  5. Reduce intake of Trans-fat or unsaturated fats which raises the LDL levels. Use low fat dairy products and eat whole grain bread instead of refined grain bread.
  6. Reduce intake of coffee or tea. Caffeine intake should be less than two times in a day.
  7. Use light cooking oil such as olive oil instead of refined oil.
One should also try to bring in some changes in the lifestyle to meet the demands and try to reduce stress. Healthy living is important which include regular exercising. One should not live a sedentary lifestyle and buy food products carefully. 

Read the label before buying any product from the shops – by Jhon Napier

"What is a Cardiac Diet? “Cardiac diet” is an unofficial term for a heart healthy diet. This is a plan to eat plenty of nutrient-rich foods—fruits and veggies, whole grains, lean poultry and fish. And it also means avoiding saturated fats, trans fats, and excess sodium and sugar."

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