Researchers have found that we can enhance our heart health by following a plant-based diet.
The findings reveal that substituting foods that have high fat content and processed meats with plant-based foods can lessen the risk of heart failure by 42 percent.
Researchers from Icahn School of Medicine in New York advice you to follow a diet that includes:
- Whole grains
- Dark green leafy plants
They also revealed that foods falling under these categories should be avoided:
- Foods high in added sugars, trans fats and saturated fats
- Refined carbohydrates
- Processed meat
A four-year-long study carried out by Dr Kyla Lara, in which 15,569 participants took part, saw the analysis of five diets:
- "Convenience" (red meats, pastas, fried potatoes, fast foods)
- "Plant-based" (dark leafy vegetables, fruits, beans, fish)
- "Sweets" (desserts, breads, sweet breakfast foods, chocolate, candy)
- "Southern" (eggs, fried food, organ meats, processed meat, sugar-sweetened drinks)
- "Alcohol/salads" (salad dressings, green leafy vegetables, tomatoes, butter, wine).
"Eating a diet mostly of dark green leafy plants, fruits, beans, whole grains and fish, while limiting processed meats, saturated fats, trans fats, refined carbohydrates and foods high in added sugars is a heart-healthy lifestyle and may specifically help prevent heart failure if you don't already have it," Dr Lara from Mount Sinai Hospital in New York explained.
Heart failure is a condition which can be deadly; it is caused when the heart is unable to pump blood efficiently around the body.
Coronary heart disease (CHD) is the most common type of heart disease, killing over 370,000 people every year, according to the statistics by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the US.