How eating healthy food can give your heart the boost it needs

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healthy heart diet

How eating healthy food can give your heart the boost it needs

We’ve always known that living a healthy lifestyle can drastically decrease your chances of various types of heart disease. These typically include exercising, eating a healthy diet, maintaining a body mass index lower than 25, and not smoking.

One of the most common forms of heart disorder is sudden cardiac arrest (SCA). A study on 82,000 women found that those who followed all four healthy lifestyle factors were 92% less likely to suffer sudden cardiac death compared to those who did not. In particular, a healthy diet has had some astounding effects on reducing the risk of SCA. Let’s take a closer look at some of the findings.

Sudden cardiac arrest and diet

Each year, 7 million people around the world will have a cardiac arrest, and the current survival rate sits at 5-10%. Not to be confused with a heart attack, sudden cardiac arrest can strike at any age or fitness level. It urges families, communities and individuals to take heart health seriously. A new approach to food and diet can give your heart health the boost it needs.

This important 26-year study found that a diet closely resembling a Mediterranean diet is the most beneficial in reducing the risk of SCA. This typically includes a diet rich in vegetables, fruits, nuts, omega-3 fats, and fish. Moderate alcohol and red meat consumption was also a significant factor in the reduction of risk.

You are what you eat

Janet Bond Bril, PhD, RD, LDN, a heart health expert and author, recommends the following balance in your diet to maximise heart health:

Fruits and vegetables: at least 4-5 servings per day

Fish (preferably oily fish): at least two 100g servings per week

Fibre-rich whole grains: at least three 30g-equivalent servings per day

Sodium: less than 1,500mg per day

Sugar-sweetened beverages: no more than 450kcal per week

Nuts, legumes, and seeds: at least four servings per week

Processed meats: no more than two servings per week

Saturated fat: less than 7% of total energy intake

More specifically, the importance of omega-3 fatty acids from marine and plant sources are stressed. Dr Bril has suggested that we all aim for:

  • 3g of plant ALA [alpha-linolenic acid] per day. To get this, we need to eat two tablespoons of ground flaxseeds.
  • 1g of EPA and DHA per day. This can be found in a small piece of salmon.

The effects of a healthy lifestyle, including a balanced diet, make an overwhelmingly positive change to our heart health. In particular, it can help prevent the risk of sudden cardiac arrest by providing the body with the right nutrients to run as efficiently as possible.

At Defib365, it’s our mission to provide businesses and communities across the UK with defibrillators. Investing in just one for your organisation can make the difference between life and death. Whether you would prefer to lease or buy our products, get in touch today on 0333 050 6649 to find out how we can help you.

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