Fiedorowicz suggests following the heart-healthy recommendations from the American Heart Association to limit the amount of saturated fat and trans fat in your diet. That means opting for lean protein and low-fat dairy products when choosing animal products. You might have heard that the fat in foods could alter the way your body uses medications: Generally, your medications will still be effective, but eating a lot of fried, fatty foods just isn’t good for your heart? And remember that the oils used for frying are high in the omega-6 fatty acids you want to avoid.
Healthy Food Swaps to Try
Planning a healthier diet doesn’t have to be drudgery. McInnis advises going to your local farmers’ markets, exploring the options, and talking with the farmers themselves about how to enjoy their produce. And for quick stops at the store, he recommends sticking to the periphery, where whole foods, such as produce and fish, are usually found. For more ways to make your diet healthier, McInnis says:
- Instead of potato chips or fries, munch on crispy vegetables with a savory dip, such as hummus.
- Skip the sweet pastry and instead top a slice of whole-grain bread or a few crackers with fruit preserves.
- Instead of a fourth or fifth cup of coffee, choose a decaf latte or an herbal tea.
- Skip the fast-food burger and fries and order a fresh salad instead.
- Swap a fried entrée for steamed or broiled fish.
Building the best diet often takes teamwork, including help from your medical team. If your diet and lifestyle need a complete makeover, reach out to your doctor or dietitian for help.