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Heart disease and diet


A healthy diet is a major factor in reducing your risk of heart disease.

Salads are always a healthy choice.The correct answer is myth. Salads are often a healthy choice, but you need to avoid high-fat items. Dressing, bacon bits, and shredded cheese all add fat and calories. Choose salads made with lettuce and vegetables, and select low-fat or fat-free dressing. On average, Americans eat about half a cup of sugar every day.The correct answer is fact. This adds up to 355 calories per day, much higher than what experts recommend. Women should have no more than 100 calories from sugar per day and men no more than 150. Cut added sugar from your diet by limiting sugary snacks and soda. To satisfy your sweet tooth, choose sweet fruits instead. Snacking is not healthy.The correct answer is myth. Snacks can give you energy in the middle of the day or decrease your hunger in between meals. Enjoy healthy snacks such as fruits, nuts, pretzels, low-fat yogurt, or string cheese. Any vegetable dish is good for you.The correct answer is myth. Vegetables are healthy. But when they are served fried, breaded, au gratin, or in a creamy sauce they are not so healthy. Choose vegetables that are raw, baked, grilled or sautéed with a small amount of vegetable oil or low-fat sauce. Fish is a healthier option than meat.The correct answer is fact. The healthiest choices are oily fish such as salmon, trout, mackerel, sardines, or albacore tuna, which are high in heart-healthy omega-3 fats. Eating fish a few times a week may help lower your risk of heart disease and stroke.All fats are bad for your heart.The correct answer is myth. Some fats are actually good for heart health. These include the monounsaturated fats found in olive oil, canola oil, peanut oil, nuts, and avocados. Choose these over the saturated fats in animal products, palm oil, and cocoa butter. It’s best to limit grains.The correct answer is fact. Adults should have about 5 to 8 ounces per day. One half cup brown rice or 1 slice of whole wheat bread is equal to one ounce. Grains contain fiber, iron, and vitamins. Whole grains are the healthiest options. Make sure to choose whole grains for at least half of your grain servings each day.Cholesterol is only found in foods made from animal products.The correct answer is fact. Cholesterol is a soft, waxy material made in our bodies and found in animal products such as egg yolks, whole-fat dairy products, and meats. To keep your heart healthy, limit the cholesterol you eat to less than 300 mg a day. Soy products aren't good for you.The correct answer is myth. Soy is rich in fiber, omega-3 fats, and protein. It also contains polyunsaturated fats, which are healthier than the fats in meat. The best sources are tofu, soy milk, and soybeans. Try adding soy to your diet a few times a week. The Mediterranean diet is just a fad.The correct answer is myth. The Mediterranean diet is rich in fiber, omega-3 fats, and antioxidants. You can eat a healthier diet by limiting red meats and whole-fat dairy products and eating more olive oil, vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and fish. All fast food is bad for you.The correct answer is myth. While much fast food is unhealthy, it is possible to make healthier choices. If you need to eat on the go, your best bet is to choose places that offer soups, salads, and vegetables. Skip the fries and order smaller servings when possible.
Alternative Names:

Diet - heart disease


A healthy diet and lifestyle can reduce your risk of:


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Heimburger DC. Nutrition's interface with health and disease. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine. 25th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2016:chap 213.

Mosca L, Benjamin EJ, Berra K, Bezanson JL, Dolor RJ, Lloyd-Jones, DM, et al. Evidence-based guidelines for cardiovascular disease prevention in women -- 2011 update: a guideline from the American Heart Association. Circulation. 2011;123:1243-62. PMID: 21325087

Mozaffarian D. Nutrition and cardiovascular and metabolic disease. In: Mann DL, Zipes DP, Libby P, Bonow RO, Braunwald E, eds. Braunwald's Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine. 10th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2015:chap 46.

Trans Fat At-a-Glance. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. June 17, 2015. Accessed July 24, 2015.

Review Date: 4/25/2015
Reviewed By: Emily Wax, RD, The Brooklyn Hospital Center, Brooklyn, NY. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. Copyright 2002 A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.

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