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Diet for heart attack

Tell me best diet for heart patient my husband he is 36 and have minor attack i want to give him better diet
(October 3, 2011)

What fruits are recommended for a heart attack patient?

A healthy diet plays an important part in recovering from a heart attack. Foods that must be avoided are processed, high fat meats and high fat dairy products. A diet for heart attack patients must include lots of fruits and vegetables. Other good foods for heart attack patients are nuts, legumes, salmon, soya beans and oatmeal.

Fruits help the heart in many ways. They are a good source of fiber, vitamins and minerals.

They are also a rich source of antioxidants, helping to strengthen the body’s immune system. Fruits for good heart care include apples, bananas, berries, apricots, red grapes & papayas. Apples contain quercetin, an anti – inflammatory that helps prevent blood clots. Apple fiber helps to reduce high cholesterol levels in the body. The potassium in bananas helps lower your blood pressure and thereby reduces the risk of a heart stroke. Apricots contain lycopene – a phytochemical found in most red fruits. Some initial research has indicated that lycopene helps prevent cancers, particularly prostate cancer and also heart diseases. Berries contain high levels of antioxidants including vitamin C–the vital cell component that is best known to treat heart disease. Cherries have very high levels of iron which help in maintaining a healthy hemoglobin count. Citrus fruits apart from being rich in vitamin C are also known to lower cholesterol levels. So remember to keep a bowl of fresh fruit within easy reach. It will help remind you to eat them regularly.

What should be diet plan after heart attack?

Great care should be taken in planning meals for heart attack patients. The safest and healthiest way to treat heart attack patients, is to make them eat as much fruits and vegetables. Red meats and dairy products should be strictly avoided. Gradually reduce the intake of saturated and trans fats in their diets, by cutting down on butter, margarine and cheese. Switch to lean white meats instead. Fish, especially salmon is very good for the heart. Use low fat substitutes wherever possible. For example, a baked potato can be topped with low fat yogurt rather than butter. Check the food labels on snack packets. Many snacks, even those labeled ‘low fat’, may have been made using partially hydrogenated oils that are bad for the heart. Choose monounsaturated fats like olive oil or canola oil for preparing meals.


A simple effective diet would consist of eating oatmeal, nuts (walnuts & almonds) and fruits like an apple or orange for breakfast. Lunch could consist of a salad, chicken and vegetables, rounded off with a dessert of fruit and low fat yogurt. Dinner should be light, consisting of a salad (salmon or tuna could be added) and fresh fruit. Always keep an apple or a banana with you, so that whenever you experience hunger pangs, there is no need to stretch out for that salted chips pack!

Which cooking oil should be used while preparing foods for heart patients?

You need to be extremely cautious in choosing the right kind of oil for cooking if you have suffered a heart attack. Not any kind of oil will do for your weak heart. Trans-fatty acids or partially hydrogenated oils should be avoided at all costs. These raise your bad cholesterol (LDL) levels and lower your good cholesterol (HDL) levels. A combination of the high and low cholesterol levels increases the possibility of heart disease. Through a process called hydrogenation, these oils are made by mixing hydrogen into vegetable oil. Read the contents listed on the cooking oil package and stay alerted for the words ‘partially hydrogenated’ vegetable oil. This is another word for trans-fat.

The best cooking oil for heart patients is olive oil. Many scientific studies have been conducted on olive oil. They show that olive oil helps both prevent and treat heart disease. Olive oil has a high level of mono unsaturated fats which help in lowering LDL levels while increasing HDL levels.

Corn oil and canola oil are also very good for the heart as they contain phytosterols, chemicals which block the absorption of cholesterol. Contrary to popularly held notions, recent studies have indicated that even coconut oil is good for the heart. It prevents the blood platelets from sticking together and thereby causes no clotting.

What are the essential nutrients for healthy heart?

A balanced diet with a high proportion of green leafy vegetables and fruits is essential to keep your heart healthy. They are an excellent source of vitamins and minerals. Vitamin C & E are antioxidants which help your body to neutralize harmful free radicals. They can neutralize oxidized cholesterol and prevent its build up in the walls of the arteries, hence preventing coronary heart diseases. Vitamin D helps regulate blood pressure. A good quality multivitamin supplement will go a long way in supplying your body with these essential nutrients.

Essential minerals for heart health include potassium, magnesium and zinc. Potassium is used as an electrolyte by the cells of the heart to change their polarity with every beat. Potassium deficiency can lead to irregularity in heart beat and an increase in blood pressure. It is found in bananas, potatoes, avocados and chicken meat. Magnesium too acts in the same way, regulating both heart rate and blood pressure. It is found in tofu, whole grains, bananas, potatoes, nuts and green vegetables.

Research has also shown the importance of zinc for a healthy heart. It has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, and helps protect the body’s cardiovascular system. Oats, raw nuts like cashews and almonds, vegetables like asparagus and peas and most fresh fruits are excellent sources of zinc.

Are protein shakes good for patient with heart attack?

You can use low fat protein shakes if you are suffering from a heart condition or have suffered a heart attack. Our body requires about 0.75gm of protein per kg of our body weight. Protein shakes are good for supplementing the body’s requirement of protein and carbohydrates. They also are good sources of amino acids which help you build strong muscles and tissues. It is easier to digest the nutrients from a protein shake as compared to some of the other sources of protein like meat and vegetables. There are different types of protein shakes for heart patients which are easily digested by the body. You can try whey and casein protein shakes which are extracted from milk. If you are a vegan, try a soy protein shake as this is a good source of amino acids. If you have a pre-existing heart condition, choose low glycemic protein shakes which have complex carbohydrates and beneficial fats. Protein shakes will also help you maintain your body’s daily requirement of proteins without adding to your cholesterol levels. These shakes are a good addition to your diet, if you are trying to keep your weight under control. Protein supplements will also help boost your immune system.

There are a number of juices that you could consume on a daily basis, to help improve heart health. Grape juice has been proven to be extremely good for the heart. It contains chemicals known as polyphenols which feature antioxidant properties. Juices good for heart health and cardiac functioning include tomato, prune, and apple juices and so you can include these in your daily diet.
Submitted by N on October 3, 2011 at 05:14


Heart Patients Diet 

A diet for heart patient means a diet that has been designed especially for a person who has recently undergone a bypass surgery, or may also have suffered a heart attack. In general, a diet for heart attack patients is a little different from other weight loss diet plans. Planning a diet for heart patients can be a bit of a challenge, especially when the diet needs to be followed on a long term basis. This is because a heart patients diet should be low in fat, sugar, sodium and at times, calories too. At the same time, diet for heart disease patients should contain a high amount of vitamins, minerals and a proper balance of the other essential nutrients. Therefore, the main target of a diet for heart patients is to limit the intake of saturated fat, which raises the level of cholesterol in the body. This can be done by restricting meat and whole dairy products in a diet and substituting animal fat with unsaturated fats that are found in canola oil, olive oil or peanut oil.

Given below is a list of “good” food for heart attack patients:

  • Oils: Saturated fats should comprise no more than 7% of your daily caloric intake and trans-fat should be less than 1%. Olive oil, canola oil and trans-fat free margarine should replace butter, lard, cocoa butter, cream, palm oil and so on.
  • Protein: Some of the best sources of protein for heart patients are skim milk or low fat milk (1%), fat free dairy products like yogurt, egg whites, cold water fish like salmon, skinless chicken, soybean, lean meats, tofu and legumes. Foods that should be strictly avoided are fried meats, bacon, sausages, cold cuts, spareribs, egg yolks, organ meats and full cream dairy products.
  • Vegetables and fruit: Fresh vegetables and fruits are the best sources of vitamins. Alternately, certain frozen or canned vegetables and fruits can also be eaten, as long as they do not contain high amounts of salt, sugar and cream.
  • Grains: This food group also includes seeds that are good for the health. Wheat products that are very healthy and include whole-grain bread, high fiber cereal, brown rice, buckwheat, barley, whole-grain pasta, flaxseed and oatmeal. Foods that should be avoided are white bread, muffins, cookies, granola bars, buttered popcorn, pies, egg noodles and other high fat snacks.
  • Herbs and spices: Since the consumption of salt needs to be cut down to a great extent, herbs, spices, salt substitutes and condiments with less salt should be consumed instead of table salt, soy sauce and tomato ketchup.

Many doctors may recommend a soup diet for heart patients, on a short-term basis. This could include clear celery soup, cabbage soup or any other clear vegetable soup that restricts the intake of fats. Heart patients may be allowed to eat other foods, such as sweets, on a few rare occasions, but only after checking with a doctor. Therefore, it is important to consult a doctor before switching over to any diet, including a diet for heart patients.

Submitted by C N on October 5, 2010 at 05:22


Nutrition for Heart Attack Patient  

Certain things when kept in mind for a patient with heart problems would definitely impart a good quality life for the rest of the time. Keep the following dietary and lifestyle modifications in mind to avoid any heart problems in future -

  • Firstly if your husband is overweight then make conscious effort to lose his weight. Half of the time it is in the hands of the spouse to control their husband's diet as most of the time they cook at home. So take extra care of your husband's diet.
  • Focus on fresh fruits and vegetables as besides giving the fiber (fiber helps to lower the LDL and total cholesterol and also helps to decrease weight) it also provides other nutrients which are helpful to the heart. For more soluble fiber in his diet soak 15g of fenugreek seeds in a cup of water at night and give him in the morning 30 minutes before breakfast with the water.
  • The total fat is to be definitely reduced in the diet, yes quantity is important but quality of fat also plays a major role. If you include omega 3 fats in the diet in the form of flaxseeds or fish then it would have a protective effect against heart attacks. But remember flaxseeds are also high in fat so if you include flaxseeds in his diet then cut down the total fat accordingly.  Also method of cooking is very important for example fish is an excellent food for heart patients as it provides good quality fat and proteins with less calories, but if you deep fry or shallow fry the fish in loads of oil then you are definitely going to lose the healthy aspects of it.
  • Certain foods should be completely avoided as far as possible like red meat, margarine, bakery products, oily or fried foods, sweet preparations like cakes, pastries, margarine, carbonated drinks, sweetened beverages and sodas.
  • Exercise is also an important factor which should never be ignored for patients with heart disease. Consult a specialist before starting any exercise regime. 
Submitted by S M on April 2, 2008 at 06:56


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