Improve your heart health; Plant Based style

How to improve your heart health

Cardiovascular health is important at any age, and your heart affects all of your body’s functions and processes. Practicing preventative health is the best way to protect your heart and body from disease while still having the energy and longevity to live your best life. 

 

Plants & more plants

How to improve your heart health Overwhelming evidence suggests plant-based diets low in animal products can help lower your risk of heart disease significantly. 1,2,3  Mind you, not all vegetarians and vegans are healthy, but many tend to consume plant foods rich in phytonutrients, vitamins, proteins, enzymes and minerals. All of these compounds help your body stay strong and immune. That’s not to say that any small consumption of animal products will poison you, but your diet should not consist primarily of these foods. Additionally meat and dairy products come at a cost. Animals are not treated ethically, and the carbon emissions and space used to produce animal products affects all of us. For more information about the Dairy industry’s destruction, read: Is dairy bad for you? The white lie we’ve been drinking. 

 

Get moving 

Heart Health

Just like eating plant foods, exercise plays a major role in the prevention against heart disease. The cool thing is that you don’t need to go full on fitness fanatic (there are already enough of those kinds of people on Instagram) you can take small, regular actions that will make a big change. For example, one study found that walking briskly 3-4 hours a week could reduce your risk of a coronary related disease or illness by 30-40 times!4 The reason these results seem so dramatic is due to your heart’s need to be exercised. Like any muscle your heart requires training in the form of repetitive movement. Moving daily allows your heart to get this exercise in. However unlike other muscles, your heart can increase the flow of blood and oxygen throughout your entire body. This is why many people feel more mentally focused or creative after working out.5 

 

 

Foods that fight for you

heart healthIt goes without saying that food can be your friend or foe. Make sure you’re setting yourself up for success by giving your body the powerful nutrition it needs to stay in top shape.

Here’s our list of heart healthy foods to indulge in: 

Protein: Tempeh, nuts, beans and seeds are some of the best forms of protein. These foods will help fuel your body through heart strengthening workouts, and contain impressive amounts of phytonutrients, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. As stated previously, it’s important to look beyond animal products for regular sources of protein. Give our plant based protein manual a read for more inspiring and heart healthy ideas.  

Fibre: The easiest way to get more fibre in your diet is to eat organic fruits and vegetables with every meal! Additionally opting for organic, whole grain breads, cereals, rice and pasta is much healthier too. Prioritizing whole foods over refined ones is always best. Fibre consumption is necessary in the prevention of heart disease.6 

Greens: Yes vegetables are so important we’re mentioning them twice. Eat your organic greens! Need a quick, easy and economical way to get a ton of organic vegetables in? Try our PureFood A to Z! This nutritional booster has over 20 organic vegetables, fruits and super-foods in it! Including kale, collard, cabbage, carrots, beets and Portobello mushrooms. 

Minerals: Mineral rich foods like raw cacao, flax seeds, chia seeds, nuts and whole grains are all great foods to add into your diet for extra calcium and magnesium. Both magnesium and calcium are crucial for heart health.7,8 

 

Your heart & mind

heart healthBody, mind and soul are all equal in terms of well being and health. They all affect each other. So it should come as no surprise that a decline in mental health affects the cardiovascular system in a negative way too.9  Research shows particularly strong connections between those suffering from anxiety or depression, and poor heart health. Unfortunately taking care of your mental well being is not as mainstream in the modern, 21st century world as it should be. Exercise and eating organic, nutrient dense foods will certainly help with all aspects of your well being, but coupling those rituals with poor mental health defeats the whole purpose. Reaching out to a healthcare practitioner regarding mental health is just as important as reaching out to one for physical health. For severe cases please contact a professional.

Adopting the below small changes may help lead to less stress, improved digestion and of course heart health!

  • Daily meditation – The science behind mediation is quite impressive. Researches found that regular meditation practice can increase your brain’s grey matter leading to heightened cognitive abilities. Meditation is also widely known to decrease stress. 
  • Balancing your circadian rhythm will help improve all aspects of your health. Your circadian rhythm is what helps your body go to sleep, wake up, digest and pull nutrients from food and much more! Learn how to balance this along with your biological clock by clicking the linked text. 
  • Whole food B vitamins will give you energy while still sustaining and balancing your nervous system. (Think energy without the crash, plus stabilization of your nervous system!) Our PureFood B only has 4 ingredients; Holy Basil, Lemon, Guava and Spirulina. 

 

Heart & stomach happy recipes

heart health

Lemon Tempeh Collard Wraps

Here are our favorite plant based recipes to fuel our body with: 

Lemon Tempeh Collard Wraps 

Heart Happy Mint Cacao Smoothie

Heart of Gold Smoothie

 

 

 

Follow these lifestyle changes to give you and your heart the best life! Did we miss one? Comment below and share your heart health hacks with us. 

 

 

References: 

1 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4073139/

2  https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/becoming-a-vegetarian

3  https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/89/5/1627S/4596952

4  http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJM199908263410904

5  https://hbr.org/2014/10/regular-exercise-is-part-of-your-job

6  http://www.bmj.com/content/347/bmj.f6879

7  http://www.mdpi.com/2072-6643/7/9/5388/htm

8  http://jaha.ahajournals.org/content/5/10/e003815

9  http://pmj.bmj.com/content/80/950/683