80% of premature heart disease can be prevented by changing your life habits like choosing heart healthy foods. Read our 10 heart healthy recipes to try this month to help reduce your risk.
Heart disease refers to what is really a group of conditions that affect the structure and functions of the heart and has many root causes. High blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, obesity are all conditions that can lead to heart disease. Heart disease can often be prevented when people make healthy choices and manage their health conditions. Healthy lifestyle choices like quitting smoking, eating a healthy and balanced diet, getting enough sleep, exercising regularly, and limiting alcohol intake can all help manage heart health.
Good thing for Ontario farmers, many research studies conclude that including whole grains in a daily diet can help reduce many of the risk factors that lead to heart disease! Read our top 10 heart healthy recipes that feature the goodness of whole grains:
Heart Healthy Recipes:
Oats especially are important to reducing your risk for heart disease. Oats are high in dietary fibre that has many benefits! Fibre keeps you full longer, and can improve blood cholesterol levels. Eating whole grains oats can lower your risk of heart disease, stroke, obesity and even type 2 diabetes. Make Overnight Oats in a Jar for a heart healthy breakfast
Nut Free Soy Energy Bites are full of whole grain goodness with the combination of whole grain oats and soy butter. These are an easy to make snack or on the go breakfast option that is healthy and delicious.
Most dietitians and healthy professionals will say breakfast is still the most important meal of the day– as long as it a healthy, balanced meal option. Starting your day off right with healthy nutrients can help reduce your risk of heart disease. Try making your own granola to place on top of yogurt or as a homemade cereal!
Looking for the ultimate balanced meal? Fill your plate with local Ontario ingredients, using the healthy plate diagram. Fill 1/4 of your plate with grains like cooked barley, then choose your favourite protein for another 1/4 of your plate. Lastly, fill the last 1/2 of your plate with fresh fruits and/or vegetables. Top with a simple salad dressing for an easy to make grain bowl that is perfect for heart month.
Get the taste of whole grain goodness in this easy to make lunch or dinner idea! Fibre found in whole wheat is essential to a heart healthy diet. The average adult needs 25-38 grams a day. Choosing whole grain pitas is a sure way to boost your fibre intake!
February is the perfect time to try out new soup recipes, especially ones that are hearty for your hearts! Our hearty recipe features vegetables, chickens and whole grain wheat berries for a tasty and healthy meal.
Greek Style Wheat Berry and Lentil salad is jam packed with nutrients (and flavours!) for a great lunch option. This recipe is high in both kinds of fibre- soluble and insoluble so you’re really getting the most health benefits out of two kinds of grains.
Soybeans contain high levels of protein and can be found in foods like tofu and soy milk. Creating a smoothie using soymilk will ensure you’re starting off the day right with this natural protein loaded Berry Fresh Smoothie.
Barley is in fibre and carbohydrates, which your body needs to produce energy. High energy foods can strengthen your metabolism and improve your physical exertion, perfect or helping to reduce your risk of heart disease. Also, barley has many proven health benefits. Barley can lower cholesterol (a risk factor in heart disease), promote good digestive health, and help lower the risk of type 2 diabetes. This grain is also a source of thiamin, niacin, folate, riboflavin, iron, calcium, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, zinc, and selenium. All considered essential vitamins and minerals. Using whole grain barley as a substitute for rice in your next stuffed peppers meal!
Make your own hummus featuring soybeans for a great snack that can be combined with fresh vegetables!
Heart disease is currently the second leading cause of death in Canada, and 90% of Canadians have at least one risk factor to develop heart disease (Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada). Choosing to eat healthy meals can help reduce your risk, and ensuring those meals contain whole grains can further reduce your families risk. Read labels carefully and choose foods that contain whole grains. Use these whole grains in your heart healthy recipes for an easy dietary change to help with your risk of heart disease.