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10 Principles for Heart Health Nutrition

Happy Valentine's Day!!

What better thing to talk about on Valentine's Day than the HEART!

The American Heart Association—in collaboration with a panel of dietitians, nutrition researchers & physicians—has released tips for heart health nutrition in its new Dietary Guidance to Improve Cardiovascular Health.

Included are these 10 guiding principles:

  1. Adjust energy intake and expenditure to achieve and maintain a healthy body weight.

  2. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetable; choose a wide variety.

  3. Choose foods made mostly with whole grains rather than refined grains.

  4. Choose healthy sources of protein, such as: mostly plant protein (legumes and nuts); fish and seafood; low-fat or fat-free dairy products (instead of full-fat versions); and lean cuts of meat or poultry (avoid processed forms).

  5. Use liquid plant oils rather than tropical oils (coconut, palm and palm kernel), animal fats (e.g., butter and lard), and partially hydrogenated fats.

  6. Choose minimally processed foods instead of ultraprocessed foods.

  7. Minimize intake of beverages and foods with added sugars.

  8. Choose and prepare foods with little or no salt. (High mileage athletes will need more salt!)

  9. If you do not drink alcohol, do not start; if you choose to drink alcohol, limit intake.

  10. Adhere to this guidance regardless of where food is prepared or consumed. Whether dining out, ordering in or cooking from scratch, these same tips still apply.

Importantly, the guidance moves away from recommending specific foods and focuses more on dietary patterns.


Running also has many benefits for the heart, of course! Such as:

  1. Improved cardiovascular health: Running can increase heart and lung function, making the heart work more efficiently.

  2. Reduced risk of heart disease: Regular exercise, such as running, can lower the risk of heart disease by improving cholesterol levels, reducing blood pressure, and controlling weight.

  3. Increased circulation: Running increases blood flow, which helps to deliver oxygen and nutrients to the heart and other organs.

  4. Strengthened heart muscles: Running can strengthen the heart muscles, making them work more efficiently and reducing the risk of heart problems.

  5. Stress relief: Running can help to relieve stress and reduce anxiety, which can lower the risk of heart disease by reducing the negative effects of stress on the heart.

When starting to run; it's important to start slowly and gradually increase intensity and duration to reduce the risk of injury.


What's also awesome for the heart? Running!! If you need help to start running, our Get Running program has all the tools for you!


Want more help?

Join our Running Workshop here!


Learn how you can run more efficiently Running Assessment


Get your FREE Strength Assessment here!


Join our online 12-week strength program here!

I'll be posting more ideas this week on my IG & FB accounts

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