The American Journal of Medicine published as study conducted by scientists at the Institute of Environmental Medicine in Sweden, that reinforced the importance of a healthy diet to develop and sustain a healthy heart. The study that followed over thirty-thousand 49-83 year-old Swedish women for a year confirmed the relationship between a diet high in natural antioxidants found in fruits and vegetables to a much greater reduction in heart attack risk.
It is possible, according to researchers, to lessen the risk by almost 1/4 just by increasing the number of antioxidant-rich vegetables and fruits in the diet. Besides vegetables and fruits, other foods such as nuts, coffee, chocolate and spices contain high amounts of beneficial antioxidants.
Vegetables and Fruits Protect the Heart and More
Women involved in the study provided information regarding the frequency with which they consumed certain foods during the study period. They were placed into groups depending on the amount of antioxidants that they were receiving from their diet. The findings indicated that women in the highest antioxidant group had a 20% lower risk of heart attack compared to the other women. It was also noted that these women consumed more than 7 serving daily of fruits and vegetables.
Recent research also indicates that antioxidants don’t just protect women from heart attacks. Antioxidants tackle free radicals, which slows down again, protects the body from disease and even defends against cancer at the genetic level.
This is the power of antioxidant-rich foods.
Supplements and Diet Together
Dr. Wolk, the research team leader, stated that the best place to get antioxidants is from natural foods and not supplements. However, various studies conducted over the past ten years have noted the health benefits offered by whole food supplements. These include curcumin, EGCG, resveratrol, and vitamins D, C and E. It appears that the best way to keep the heart as healthy as possible is to consume ten servings of vegetables and fruits per day and take a high-quality whole food supplement for good measure.
The human body is designed to function much like an orchestra playing perfectly in tune. All parts come together and work for the common good, to keep the body functioning at its highest level for the longest time possible. The heart is the strongest muscle in the body and is at the center of the cardiovascular system. The superhighway of arteries, veins, and capillaries line the body delivering oxygen rich blood to the heart while carrying away harmful toxins. In the best of conditions, this system operates flawlessly.
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However, introduce poor lifestyle habits such as too little exercise, lack of sleep, high stress, poor nutrition and toxins into the mix and the result is disastrous. The body, no longer able to cope with chronic insult, rebels with hypertension, increased blood sugar and thickening of the arterial walls. Over 17 million people worldwide die from a type of cardiovascular disease each year.
It is possible, however, to avoid the development of disease and maintain a healthy heart with a shift in lifestyle. Reducing risk factors such as poor diet, stress, toxins and lack of exercise protect the body from such system failure.
How, you ask? Feed your body powerful antioxidants.