A heart attack is your body’s way of shouting for help. It means that your coronary arteries are so blocked that your heart is struggling to get its job done. So, you must take good care of your health to ensure no further attacks.
Below are some foods to avoid after a heart attack and some big lifestyle changes are required to stop the arteries from getting blocked further and to maintain your heart health. The most important thing to do is stop eating certain foods that can worsen your situation.
In general, you have to avoid foods that contain saturated fats, trans fat, salt, and refined sugar. These have proved to hurt heart health. Consuming them regularly can cause plaque formation and clog the arteries.
The list below will have various foods that are consumed regularly but can have a serious impact on your heart health. If you had already had a heart attack, steer clear of these foods.
Here is a list of foods to avoid after a heart attack
1. Fried food
Fried foods are harmful in two ways. When healthy foods are fried, they lose all their nutrients and become empty calories. Secondly, most of the oil, when heated goes through the process of oxidization.
Oxidized cholesterol is known to be the major cause of plaque build-up. Especially, if you are eating outside, you do not know what oil they are using and how many times it has been used. Fried foods contain a high amount of saturated fats, trans fat and usually a lot of salt.
If you cannot avoid fried food, try doing it at home. Choose oils that do not oxidize easily like coconut oil or olive oil. Pan-frying or stir-frying are better options rather than deep frying.
Do you regularly drink soda as a water alternative? Or is it something you grab every day? It is time to stop doing that. Sodas are filled with nothing but sugar and artificial flavors.
If you are cutting sugar in everything else but continue drinking soda, it is not going to show any results as just one can of soda surpasses the daily recommendation of sugar. Replace the soda with water. In case you miss the sweetness, try drinking fruit infused water.
3. Fast foods
Fast foods are one of your greatest enemies when it comes to heart health. Most fast-food chains focus on taste and delivering food fast. As a result, most of them are mass-produced, frozen and fried with very little regard to the health of the customers.
As tempting as they can be, they contain a lot of salt and other flavor-enhancing ingredients that are harmful. They are also packed with harmful fats.
4. Processed meats and red meats
Some meats indeed contain a good amount of protein. However, you have to be careful while choosing your meat and try to eat meat every day. Processed meats are full of sodium and nitrates that can increase your blood pressure.
Besides they also contain fatty portions of meat that can increase your blood cholesterol levels. Red meats are harmful for the same reason: loaded fat. The healthier option is leaner cuts of meat. If you can substitute other meats with fishes like salmon and mackerel it is even better.
5. Packet foods
We all like to crash in front of the television with a bag of chips now and then. But we barely stop to consider what goes into making that packet food we enjoy so much. They are extremely unhealthy, especially the most commonly consumed potato chips.
They are full of preservatives and artificial flavors to enhance shelf-life. They are covered in salt and are full of saturated fat which is both bad for a person who already suffers from clogged arteries.
6. Sugary or full-cream desserts
Be it baked goods, ice creams, or even full-fat yogurt, they are all bad for your heart. Sugar is an addictive substance and when we consuming these desserts, we consume a large amount of it without even knowing it.
The refined sugar these desserts contain spikes our blood sugar levels. This can lead to an increase in blood pressure, inflammation and an increase in weight. Most desserts are made up of refined flour which is also bad for health.
Whenever you crave sweets, it is better to reach for fruits rather than sugary desserts. It is okay to have these treats once in a while but frequent intake is not advisable.
7. Sauces and other condiments
Even if we are very vigilant of what we are eating, bad fats and other chemicals can slip into our diets through condiments. Even the condiments that are not sweet usually contain a lot of sugar and sodium.
Things like cream sauces can contain both saturated and trans-fat. It is better to make all of your condiments at home rather than buying them at the store. This way you can be in control of what goes into your food.
There are foods to avoid after a heart attack. Apart from this, avoid drinking alcohol and quit smoking as they have proven to affect your heart health.
The list gives you the broad categories of food, but if you are serious about your heart health and clogged arteries, you should have a deeper understanding of your diet. The best way to do that is to read the ‘Oxidized Cholesterol strategy’.