As you age, the chances for heart disease also increase. This is why it’s important to embrace a heart healthy diet and activities as soon as possible. Although it may sound intimidating, increasing positive cardiovascular health is easy and can be done with very few adjustments to your current lifestyle.
What is “Heart Healthy”?
To be “heart healthy” means that you taken steps to keep your heart and arteries in good shape – so you remain healthy throughout your life. According to the U.S. Department of Health,
“Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States.”
Maintaining and starting a heart healthy style is simple and typically only requires minor changes or improvements. For example, you could:
- Participate in regular physical activities (even walking around your senior apartment, cottage, villa, or community for a few minutes every few hours can make a huge difference!)
- Quit smoking and stay away from secondhand smoke.
- Only drink alcohol in moderation.
- Try to manage stress.
- Eat a healthier diet.
By taking action to promote healthy cardiovascular health, you will decrease your risk for heart attacks, heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and obesity.
What’s Included in a Healthy Diet?
The ideal diet would consist of foods that are good for the heart. These include foods low saturated and trans-fat, added sugar, and salt. Trade these for wholegrains, unsaturated fats, and options high in antioxidants and fiber. There are many ways to make your diet healthier.
Go for the Veggies and Fruits
For example, try adding more fruits and vegetables to your diet. Fruits are rich in natural sugars and vegetables are packed with fiber. A cheap option is to buy frozen fruits to make smoothies in the morning. If vegetables aren’t one of your favorite food groups to eat, try blending spinach or kale into your smoothies instead. The fruits will overpower the vegetables, so you won’t taste them.
Get Rid of Bad Carbs
Another tip is to swap your white breads, rice, pasta, and cereals for whole wheat. Whole wheat has a lot more fiber and nutrients. Also, it can sometimes add a nice textural element to your palate. Additionally, often for pasta, the taste difference is very minimal.
Add More Herbs
Salt in moderation is fine – and an important part of a healthy diet. The problem is that we all eat too much of it in processed foods. An easy way to keep your salt intake down is the add more herbs. Try experimenting with spices rich in flavor like rosemary, curry, chili powder, cinnamon, cilantro, parsley, mint, and nutmeg. They will all add an extra dimension to your dishes while lowering your salt intake.
Say Goodbye to Store-Bought, Preprocessed Foods
An easy way to stay away from unhealthy fats is to avoid eating processed foods. Increase homecooked meals, and decrease eating out. If you’re a resident of Mansions Senior Living’s retirement communities, you have the option of cooking for yourself in your fully equipped personal kitchen or having healthy and delicious meal options cooked for you by award-winning chefs. Chefs like Christina Milazzo from The Mansions at Alpharetta Senior Independent Living are passionate about providing delicious foods that are also heart healthy.
If you’re not the best cook, we’ve got you covered. Mansions Senior Living hosts live cooking demonstrations. They are arranged for both online and offline viewings. It’s a fun way to get started with delicious, heart healthy home cooking.
Recipes for a Healthy Heart
Mansions Senior Living regularly pins and posts heart healthy diet recipes on Pinterest. However, some delicious recipes we’d like to highlight are:
- Heart Healthy Pizza by Vedged Out
- Curry Roasted Cauliflower Sweet Potato Salad by Ambitious Kitchen
- Crispy Baked Cauliflower Tacos by Veggie Inspired
- Asian-Inspired Vegan Cabbage Rolls by ElaVegan
- Cauliflower Taco Bowls by This Savory Vegan
- Easy and Savory Cabbage Soup by Sweet and Savory Meals
- Coconut Lime Chicken by The Almond Eater
Want to Know More About Improving Cardiovascular Health?
Contact us here to learn more about how our 55+ all-inclusive senior living communities have plenty of opportunities to help increase physical activity, decrease stress, and maintain a healthy lifestyle.