Clogged arteries are a dangerous condition, but certain foods can prevent them. Read this list for more info (you’ll be surprised by some of the foods here!).
When people want to eat foods that are healthy for their heart, their first thought would most likely be fruits and veggies.
But, while fruits and vegetables are certainly an important aspect of a heart-healthy diet, there are other foods that can help clean out your arteries. In fact, there are other foods that are necessary to keep your arteries from being clogged.
It might be surprising to some to learn of these foods. Here they are (along with some of the fruits and vegetables you should be eating for clear arteries):
Also Read: 5 Ways to Remain Healthy This Busy Holiday Season
If you’ve always thought of turmeric as a simple spice, you were so wrong. Turmeric is known as one of the healthiest spices.
This ground root has been used for centuries in ayurvedic medicine as a blood-cleansing herbal supplement. One of its best properties is that it helps keep plaque out of the blood and arteries.
Turmeric also carries powerful anti-inflammatory properties that help keep the arteries from becoming inflamed, allowing the blood to flow more easily.
Yummy! Who would have thought you could stop your arteries from getting clogged with this delectable treat?
When it comes to chocolate, darker is better. Dark chocolate has more heart-healing compounds and antioxidants but less sugar and fat.
Whenever you need a treat, just break off a piece and enjoy knowing you’re doing your heart some good.
Almonds contain monounsaturated fats, which help to lower the bad cholesterol levels and boost good cholesterol.
Almonds also contain a healthy dose of magnesium, which is proven to lower blood pressure. They are also a good source of vitamin E, fiber, and protein.
Almonds and other nuts, like pistachios, walnuts, and cashews, are the perfect mid-afternoon snack to tie you over until dinner. They contain all the ingredients necessary to satisfy your hunger and provide energy.
Pistachios are special, too, because they contain sterols. These are plant-based compounds that scientists extract and use in cholesterol-lowering products.
Lentils make the perfect soul-soothing soup, but they are also very healthy for the body. They are high in fiber and a good source of vegetarian protein. They are also low in fat, so they are a great addition to a heart-healthy diet.
Lentils are great at protecting your arteries because they contain magnesium, potassium, and calcium, which are all minerals that lower blood pressure.
Much of the bread and grain products on the market are highly processed, bleached, and stripped of all the healthy nutrition they contain. If you choose whole-grain breads and crackers, however, you are making a very wise choice.
Whole grains are high in fiber, which helps lower cholesterol and promotes a healthy digestive system. Whole grains include oats, rye, brown rice, buckwheat, barley, and quinoa.
Stay away from any white grains. White bread, crackers, rice, and cereals carry no nutritional value, just a lot of gluten.
Look for products that are brown, seeded, and labeled “100% whole grain.” A box or bag that simply states that it contains whole grains doesn’t mean that it is pure.
The humble avocado is one of the only fruits with omega-3 fatty acids. These green mayo substitutes are full of healthy fats.
Avocados also contain fiber to keep you full and are a good source of vitamins K, C, and E, as well as potassium and folate.
Eating these fatty fruits on your salad will help you absorb many of the fat-soluble vitamins in your greens and other veggies. Avocados contain two different types of carotenoids that protect your eye health.
Watermelon is one of the only fruit sources of the amino acid L-citrulline. This vasodilating amino acid relaxes the veins. Stiff arteries make blood flow more difficult.
Not to mention, the water content in watermelon is great, hence the name. Eating watermelon can help to keep you hydrated, improving circulation even further.
Watermelon contains no fat and few calories. This is a great food to add to a heart-healthy diet.
Potatoes get a bad rap when it comes to health concerns. Trendy diets, such as the keto diet, prohibit you from eating them altogether.
But the fact is that potatoes are a great source of potassium. This mineral helps regulate your blood pressure and combats the negative effects that sodium has on blood pressure levels.
You can get potassium from sweet potatoes, too, if you prefer that variety.
While all veggies are healthy, some are better for your circulatory system than others.
Broccoli is one of the veggies that’s very good in this regard.
This green veggie contains a good amount of vitamin K, which can help prevent calcium buildup in veins, otherwise known as plaque.
It also contains the three minerals that are good for blood pressure: calcium, magnesium, and potassium.
Broccoli has a super ingredient called sulforaphane, which uses proteins to prevent plaque buildup in the arteries.
Last but not least, broccoli has a high fiber content. Do you see why broccoli had to be on this list?
When you think about it, the best medicine is always a good diet. Eating these foods is a proactive way to protect your arteries from getting clogged.
So, if you are worried about the condition of your arteries or you’ve been warned by the doctor about your cholesterol levels, start incorporating them into your meals.
You’ll do your heart, waistline, and whole body a lot of good!
Adam Marshall is a freelance writer who specializes in all things apartment organization, real estate, and college advice. He currently works with Palmia to help them with their online marketing.