When we think about cardiovascular or heart health, what we are really worried about is maintaining the health of our arteries. When plaque buildup occurs in these critical passageways it restricts proper blood flow and may ultimately lead to a heart attack.
But you don’t need to have had a heart attack to feel the effects of coronary artery disease. When those arteries are clogged, you won’t be getting enough blood to your heart, which causes chest pain, a feeling of heaviness, and shortness of breath.
The good news is that you don’t have to go on some crazy detox diet in order to help clear out your arteries. Just look for foods that are high in antioxidants, healthy fats, and most crucially, fiber. Eat more of the following nutritious and delicious foods to naturally clear your arteries.
1. Healthy fats
A huge marketing campaign in the 1980s pointed to fat as the demon driving weight gain, but the reality is more complicated. In fact, evidence now points to sugar as the real culprit.
Of course, fat should be consumed in moderation, and the important thing is to eat the right kind. The saturated fats in burgers and fried foods are not good for your arteries, but the monounsaturated variety actually lowers bad cholesterol and protects you from a heart attack or stroke.
Where to get it:
Avocados are full of healthy fat that balances out good and bad cholesterol levels, actually removing some of the bad from your arteries. They are also high in potassium, which studies show can help prevent calcification of the artery walls.
Fatty fish such as salmon, tuna, and mackerel are great choices for healthy unsaturated fats. Fish is also high in omega-3 fatty acids that can lower the level of harmful triglycerides in your arteries.
Nuts are fantastic as a snack or crunchy topper to all sorts of meals. They are high in unsaturated fat, but also in vitamins and fiber. We recommend cashews, almonds, and Brazil nuts for their additional magnesium content, which is thought to prevent the buildup of cholesterol plaque in your arteries.