Not just blueberries, but strawberries and other berries as well. According to a 2013 study women aged 25 through 42 who ate more than three servings of blueberries and strawberries a week had a 32% lower risk of heart attack compared with those who ate less. The authors of the study attributed the benefit to compounds known as anthocyanins, flavonoids (which are antioxidants) that may decrease blood pressure and dilate blood vessels. Anthocyanins give plants their red and blue colors.
2. Orange Juice
100% juice made of orange is full of antioxidants that help strengthen blood vessels. At the same time, this delicious juice lowers blood pressure. Two glasses a day are more than enough to meet the daily needs of vitamin C and enjoy their beneficial properties.
For a long time, it is known that nuts contain many healthy fats. They contain fatty acids such as Omega 3 and monounsaturated fats. These fats are not only good for regulating your high cholesterol levels but also to take care of your joints and keep your memory in optimal conditions. The best varieties are walnuts or almonds, and with half a handful a day is more than enough.
4. Dark Chocolate
Cocoa contains flavanols, which are organic chemicals with potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant property. These flavanols also improve your levels of nitric oxide, which can lower your blood pressure by dilating blood vessels. One study found that people who had dark chocolate, which is particularly rich in flavanols, for 15 days experienced both a decrease in their blood pressure and improved glucose sensitivity. So if your heart’s pining for some dark chocolate, go ahead and indulge.
Pomegranates can do your heart a world of good. Studies have found that can it lower blood pressure and cholesterol. The oxidation of LDL cholesterol which is the bad kind of cholesterol as opposed to HDL cholesterol is a critical step in the development of heart disease. One study found that when patients with diabetes and hyperlipidemia had 40 g of concentrated pomegranate juice their LDL cholesterol and total cholesterol levels were significantly lowered while their HDL cholesterol levels weren’t impacted.
Research has also found that these amazing fruits can increase the activity of an enzyme known as serum paraoxonase which works against the oxidation of LDL cholesterol.
6. Red Wine
If you enjoy a glass of red wine once in a while, it may have a protective effect against coronary heart disease. According to research, ethanol and the bio-active compounds quercetin and trans-resveratrol present in red wine work well as blood thinners and lower the risk of blood clots forming.
However, do keep in mind that this is a treat that needs to be enjoyed in moderation. Having more than a drink a day if you’re a woman or a couple of drinks a day if you’re a man can actually be harmful to your heart. One drink is defined as 5 ounces of wine with an alcohol content of 12 percent.