Heart disease continues to be the number one killer in America, even though many of its risk factors are preventable. One factor to be aware of is diet. We know that eating an unhealthy diet can increase your risk of heart disease. This includes consuming foods high in fat, sugar, and salt. Many processed foods make the list of foods to avoid to reduce your risk of heart disease.
Eating foods rich in nutrients that have anti-inflammatory properties is best when it comes to protecting the heart.
Researchers from King’s College London uncovered one food which stood out more than others when it came to protecting the heart. That food was blueberries, and the researchers suggest consuming about one cup of blueberries daily can help cut your risk of heart disease by 20 percent. People who consumed blueberries daily also reduced their systolic blood pressure. Blueberries effects on blood pressure were similar to what is seen in individuals who take blood pressure-lowering medications.
The study included 40 healthy individuals who consumed 200 grams of blueberries or a beverage with fiber, vitamins, and minerals for a month. Blood pressure and flow-mediated dilation were monitored.
There was no health impact in those who consumed the control beverage, but those who drank the blueberry juice received several health benefits. Blood vessel function was improved within hours of juice consumption, and these improvements were sustained for the month. Blood clotting and blood pressure also improved.
Blueberries are healthy for the heart due to the components in blueberries that provide them with their color. The study shows that it wasn’t fiber, minerals, or vitamins that improved heart health, but rather these other components.
Try to incorporate more brightly colored fruits and vegetables into your diet to improve your heart and overall health.