Heart disease is the number 1 killer in America. What you eat and drink can make all the difference. In honor of American Heart Month this February, I’m sharing few antioxidant-rich beverages that can help protect your heart!
- Green Smoothie: Add heart-healthy ingredients like bright leafy greens, creamy avocado and fiber-rich flax or chia seeds to your next green smoothie. Leafy greens like spinach and kale contain nutrients that prevent plaque buildup in blood vessels. Avocado provides healthy monounsaturated fats that reduce bad cholesterol, and high-fiber seeds like flax and chia seeds provide heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids that boost good cholesterol. Enjoy this Get Your Greens Smoothie for breakfast or as a post-workout snack.
- Red Wine: Red wine contains the polyphenol, resveratrol, which has been found to lower heart disease. Swap out your next drink with a glass of red wine, but mind your portion sizes. Dietitians recommend one 5-ounce glass a day for women and two 5-ounce glasses a day for men at most. And don’t let over-sized glassware fool you. Five ounces is about 1/3 of a cup. A typical bottle of wine contains about 25 ounces of wine – or five 5 ounce glasses.
- 100% Grape Juice: Not a wine drinker? 100% concord grape juice offers similar polyphenols that promote healthy circulation without the alcohol. Meet your daily fruit intake with a 4-ounce glass, which counts as one serving (1/2 cup) of fruit. Look for brands that are committed to 100% juice and no added sugar. For variety, consider pomegranate, tart cherry or cranberry juice as well. Enjoy these nutrient-dense juices in a glass or creatively in a zesty vinaigrette or marinade recipe.
- Coffee: Two or three 8-ounce cups of coffee per day can also promote heart health. Most coffee shops use two or three tablespoons of grounds to brew one 8-ounce cup and what you add to your morning java could affect your blood sugar and your waist line. Enjoy your coffee black or with a splash of low-fat milk or an unsweetened non-dairy alternative, and consider adjusting your brewing ratio to get more volume for your grounds.
- Green Tea: Green tea contains the antioxidants called catechins, which can lower blood pressure and reduce the risk for cardiovascular disease and stroke. Enjoy a recommended 8-ounce glass of green tea in a variety of ways – as a traditional hot cup of tea, a frothy mug of matcha, or as a refreshing glass of iced tea. Curious about caffeine? An 8-ounce cup of green tea contains about half the amount of caffeine as a cup of coffee.
Download our Superfood Drinks for Your Heart Infographic!