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Cooking Tips to Help You Keep Your Heart Healthy

By Sara Butler

A part of caring for your heart is eating healthy, especially if you have high blood pressure or high cholesterol levels. You may think that eating for your heart health is a bland affair, but that couldn't be further from the truth. It is possible to treat your taste buds and keep your heart health in mind. Here are a few tips to help you boost flavor in the things you cook while also boosting the health of your cardiovascular system. Following these tips can help you to reduce your risk for heart attack and stroke down the road.

Explore Herbs and Spices

It's not your fault -- in a lot of ways, humans are attracted to the taste of fat and salt because it's simply so prevalent in the Western diet full of convenience foods these days. The trick to staying away from all these unhealthy foods is to reawaken your taste buds with spices and herbs.

Start out small by adding just a few basic items to the foods you eat such as oregano, thyme, and basil. Then, branch out and experiment with garlic, coriander, ginger, pepper, chili peppers, and cilantro in the foods you prepare to discover what you like and what you don't. The possibilities are delicious as well as endless when it comes to adding flavor with herbs and spices to your food -- and they don't add salt or fat in the process.

Go with Vegetables

The star of many meals is meat, but that doesn't have to be the only beacon of deliciousness on your plate. It's important to take your vegetable side dishes up a notch. Don't make the side dishes you serve an afterthought, but one you put a lot of time and thought into to make flavorful.

When you're out shopping for your meals, buy seasonal vegetables and fruits that you can turn into inspired side dishes. Great vegetables to turn to in the winter include:

  • Squash
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Kale
  • Beets
  • Parsnips
  • Turnips

Go Nuts

Another way to add flavor to your meals, as well as interesting texture, is with nuts. Researchers have found that nuts such as walnuts, pistachios, peanuts, and almonds can help reduce your bad LDL cholesterol and lower blood pressure. It's best to go with nuts that have been dry roasted or are raw since they don't have any extra oils or fats added. Sprinkle nuts on top of your dishes for added texture and flavor.

Eating your way to better heart health is one of the tastiest things you can do!

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Sandy Springs, Ga.

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