When stress knocks hard as it has during the global pandemic, many of us eat more, and lesser healthy comfort food may be the treat we stick out for first. But an unhealthy reaction to stress can be hard on your body, especially your heart.
That’s why it’s more appropriate — at the top of the New Year, or anytime — to try to eat foods that benefit us more. It’ll make your heart happier, and maybe cut off your belly fat, too. Don’t know where to start from? Let the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) help. “We have many recipes for healthy and really tasty dishes, plus an award-winning eating plan called Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension, or DASH for short,” says Charlotte Pratt, Ph.D., M.S., R.D., a nutrition expert at NHLBI. For years, the DASH eating plan has aligned among the U.S. News & World Reports’ best diets for healthy living and heart health. Its secret, says Pratt, “Eating nutrient-dense foods and meals that are lower in sodium and saturated fat, rich in fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy, and legumes.”Some of the recipes NHLBI has developed to support the plan feature healthy genres of comfort foods, such as oven-baked French fries, Chicken Chile stew, and sweet potato custard. The recipes are easy to make and family-friendly. They include traditional African American, American Indian/Alaska Native, Vietnamese, Latino, and Filipino dishes.
“The DASH eating plan is dependably proven to lower your blood pressure and cholesterol levels,” says Pratt. And NHLBI research shows that increasing your physical activity and surveying your calories while following DASH will also help you to lose weight. DASH requires no special foods, and it helps you set daily and weekly nutritive goals using these simple leads:
Eat vegetables, fruits and whole grains
Include fat-free or low-fat dairy products, fish, poultry, beans, nuts and vegetable oils
Limit foods that are high in saturated fat, such as fatty meats, full-fat dairy foods and tropical oils such as coconut, palm kernel and palm oils.
Limit sugar-sweetened drinks and desserts
To make it contented to follow the DASH for life, these guidance can help to change guardedly.
Add one more portion of vegetables a day.
Read nutrition labels to choose the food lowest in soaked fat, sodium or salt and added sugar.
Differ foods high in proteins.
Try a mix of thin cuts of meat.
Separate the skin from chicken.
Eat fish once or twice a week.
Eat two or more meals without meat each week.
Select healthy, tasty snacks.
Have a slice of fruit, a few unsalted snacks such as rice cakes, fat-free or low-fat yogurt or raw vegetables with a low-fat dip.
Try whole-wheat bread or brown rice in place of white bread or white rice.
Try beans or seeds such as flax or sunflower seeds, if you’re sensitized to nuts.
Follow the U.S. Dietary Guidelines recommendations.
Merging healthy eating habits with other self-care interests can assist you reduce stress and take care of your heart.
Top of the list:
Walk more throughout the day, get 7-8 hours of proper sleep, and try calming exercises such as meditation or yoga. If you smoke, try evacuating, and developing a strong communal – support system to help keep you encouraged.
Healthy Menu Example:
Appetizing, oven-baked French Fries baking instead of frying these potatoes reduces the fat while keeping them crunchy.
Prep time: 10 minutes.
Cook time: 35 minutes.
Make 5 servings. Serving size: 1 cup
4 large potatoes (2 lbs.), (regular or sweet potatoes), 8 C ice water, 1 tbsp garlic powder, 1 tbsp onion powder, 1/4 tbsp salt, 1 tbsp white pepper, 1/4 tbsp allspice, 1 tbsp hot pepper flakes, 1 Tbsp vegetable oil direction.
Rub potatoes and cut them into long 1/2-inch strips. Place the pieces in the ice water, cover and let it chill for 1 hour or longer. Eliminate potato pieces and dry them entirely. Preheat oven to 475 degree F. Place garlic powder, onion powder, salt, white pepper, allspice and pepper flakes in a plastic bag. Roll the potato pieces in the spice mix. Put the potato pieces in an empty baking pan and grease them with oil.
Cover the baking pan with aluminum foil and bake at 475 degree F for 15 minutes.
Put away the foil and continue baking, uncovered, for 15 – 20 minutes or until it thoroughly turns golden brown. Flip the fries from time to time until brown on all sides.
-With the help of Agencies
Food, Health and You