Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Take Nutrition to Heart

February is National Heart Month, when good nutrition is truly at the "heart" of the matter. A healthy heart is the result of good genes, the right food choices, plenty of physical activity and knowing how to deal with stress.

While you can't do much about your genes, regular exercise, eating right and dealing with stress are lifestyle behaviors you can control.

In general, eat more plant foods, fish, poultry and low-fat dairy foods. Cook with moderate amounts of olive or canola oil instead of butter, margarine or shortening.

Some examples of foods for heart health include:

* beans, peas and barley
* soybeans, other soy-based foods (not soybean oil)
* fruits and vegetables
* salmon, tuna, sardines and mackerel
* red grapes and purple grape juice
* nuts, such as almonds, walnuts, pecans and hazelnuts
* green or black tea
* onions, scallions, shallots, garlic and leeks