There are many factors which can lead to heart disease. Smoking, stress, limited physical activity, diets high in saturated and trans fats all contribute to cardiovascular diseases. In fact, heart disease is the number one killer in the USA and is responsible for 1/3 of all deaths! However, there are ways to reduce the risk of developing heart disease. A simple place to start is with a diet high in fruits and vegetables. Many studies show how specific nutrients have healing effects on the heart. Below is a list of some of these nutrients.
Vitamin C is essential to make Collagen – an important component in the make up of our arteries. Collagen is an elastic substance which allows the arteries to contract and expand for healthy blood flow. Collagen repairs our arteries when they are damaged by free radicals.
If there is not enough vitamin C in our system to produce collagen, an unhealthy substitute is used instead – cholesterol! If this continues, cholesterol builds up and the arteries harden (atherosclerosis) constricting blood flow. This can also lead to angina and a possible heart attack or stroke. Furthermore, vitamin C helps detoxify blood and prevents blood from sticking and clotting. Some good juicer recipes food sources include oranges, kiwi fruit, blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, apples, broccoli, cucumber and carrots.
Vitamin E like vitamin C is also important for a healthy heart and is a powerful antioxidant that helps prevent free radical attacks on artery walls. It also has blood thinning properties and can prevent blood from sticking and clotting. Good juicer recipes food sources include blackberries, apples and kiwi fruit.
Magnesium is essential for the muscles of the body to function which includes the heart. A healthy heart requires both magnesium and calcium to function. For instance, magnesium is essential for the heart muscle to relax. Calcium is needed for the heart to contract.
If there isn’t enough magnesium then cramping can occur causing high blood pressure and arrhythmia. If magnesium levels get low enough, a heart attack can be the result. Good juicer recipes food sources include kiwi fruit, blackberries, strawberries, spinach, kale and broccoli.
Calcium works with magnesium for the heart muscles to function properly. Low levels of calcium can also raise blood pressure. Good juicer recipes food sources include oranges, kale, spinach and parsley
Potassium is also vital for the heart to function. It allows nerve impulses to reach the muscles and carry out the desired response. Very low potassium levels, like magnesium, can also trigger a heart attack. My father who drinks way too much alcohol suffered a low potassium heart attack. Great juicer recipes food sources include oranges, strawberries, spinach and tomatoes.
B6 and FOLIC ACID
Low levels of B6 and folic acid can raise homocysteine levels in the blood. Even the slightest increase in homocysteine can increase the risk of developing heart disease. Great juicer recipes food sources for B6 is watermelon and carrots. Food sources for folic acid include blackberries, broccoli and spinach.
Allium compounds are phytochemicals found in garlic and onions. Garlic is considered to be an excellent food source for a healthy heart. Research shows that allium compounds can lower cholesterol and blood pressure.
Ellagic acid is a phytochemical that can lower cholesterol. It is mostly found in berries and a few other fruits. Great juicer recipes food sources include red grapes, kiwifruit, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries and blackberries.
HEALTHY HEART JUICER RECIPES
Fitting all of these nutrients into your diet is going to have great benefits for your heart health. Juicing is a simple and excellent way to do this. We have put together two delicious juicer recipes for you. One is fruit based, the other vegetable based. We recommend rotating both of these juicer recipes so you are sure to get some great healthy heart nutrients into your diet! Alternatively you can use the information here to experiment with and put together your own juicer recipes.
Heart Healthy Juice #1 – Berry Bonanza!
1 cup of blueberries
1 cup of blackberries
1 cup of strawberries
1 Kiwi fruit (peeled)
Wash the berries, top the strawberries and peel the kiwi.Juice them and then mix with the juice with a good stir.Heart healthy nutrients in this juice include vitamin C, vitamin E, folic acid, magnesium, potassium, and ellagic acid.
Heart Healthy Juice #2 – Hearty Vegetables!
1 cup of spinach
1 cup of kale
1/2 cup of parsley
1/2 an apple (add more to sweeten)
1 glove of garlic (add to taste)
Heart healthy nutrients supplied include vitamins C, B6 and E, folic acid, magnesium, potassium, calcium and allium compounds. For more heart healthy juicer recipes visit Juicer Recipes
Have fun juicing and stay healthy.