Mayo Clinic’s 8 Steps to Prevent Heart Disease (Part 1)

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Unfortunately, simply living a vegan lifestyle doesn't guarantee heart health. Read on for 3 game-changing tips to minimize your risk of heart disease.

In This Article

heart disease grains

This and the next few Nutrition Bites will be focused on Heart Health and 8 great tips from the prestigious Mayo Clinic.*  Below you’ll find steps 1-3 to prevent heart disease. 

Although you might know that eating certain foods can increase your heart disease risk, changing your eating habits is often tough. 

Whether you have years of unhealthy eating under your belt or you simply want to fine-tune your diet, here are eight heart-healthy diet tips. 

When you know which foods to eat more of and which foods to limit, you’ll be on your way toward a heart-healthy diet.

Control Your Portion Size

How much you eat is just as important as what you eat. Overloading your plate, taking seconds and eating until you feel stuffed can lead to eating more calories than you should. 

Following a few simple tips to control food portion size can help you shape up your diet as well as your heart and waistline:

  • Use a small plate or bowl to help control your portions.
  • Eat more low-calorie, nutrient-rich foods, such as fruits and vegetables
  • Eat smaller amounts of high-calorie, high-sodium foods, such as refined, processed or fast foods.

It’s also important to keep track of the number of servings you eat. 

Eat MORE Fruit & Veg

Vegetables and fruits are good sources of vitamins and minerals, low in calories and rich in dietary fiber. Vegetables and fruits, like other plants or plant-based foods, contain substances that may help prevent cardiovascular disease. 

Fruits and vegetables to chooseFruits and vegetables to limit
1) Fresh or frozen vegetables and fruits
2) Low-sodium canned vegetables
3) Canned fruit packed in juice or water
1) Coconut
2) Vegetables with creamy sauces
3) Fried or breaded vegetables
4) Canned fruit packed in heavy syrup
5) Frozen fruit with sugar added
heart disease farmers market

Consider Whole Grains

Whole grains are good sources of fiber and other nutrients that play a role in regulating blood pressure and heart health. You can increase the amount of whole grains in a heart-healthy diet by making simple substitutions for refined grain products. Or be adventuresome and try a new whole grain, such as whole-grain farro, quinoa or barley.

Grain products to choose

  • Whole-wheat flour
  • Whole-grain bread, preferably 100% whole-wheat bread or 100% whole-grain bread
  • High-fiber cereal with 5 g or more fiber in a serving
  • Whole grains such as brown rice, barley and buckwheat (kasha)
  • Whole-grain pasta
  • Oatmeal (steel-cut or regular)

Grain products to limit or avoid

  • White, refined flour
  • White bread
  • Muffins
  • Frozen waffles
  • Cornbread
  • Doughnuts
  • Biscuits
  • Quick breads
  • Cakes
  • Pies
  • Egg noodles
  • High-fat snack crackers
whole grains

We’ll have more great tips for a healthy, plant-based heart in our next Nutrition Bite. 

IMPORTANT…

RIGHT NOW we’d like to invite you to check out this guidebook on the latest heart disease science and the top 15 foods that have been scientifically proven to help promote a healthy heart.

Are you already eating them?

>> Download “15 Foods Your Heart Will Love” here

heart disease heart food guidebook
*Based on information provided by the Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research (MFMER).

Visit veganrecipes.com for amazing vegan recipes, and don’t forget to sign up for VegHealth to get more beneficial vegan knowledge. 

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We chose people who were experts about the lessons they wrote, even if they didn't agree with our other contributors on every point. For example, some of our contributors eat mostly raw foods while others eat mostly macrobiotic. Some shun oil while others stir fry their vegetables. As a result, none of our contributors has endorsed all of the lessons written by other experts.