As Christmas time quickly approaches many of us are gearing up for time off with family and friends, which often means beginning to consider our Christmas meal spreads.
It’s normal for many of us to get excited at just the thought of devouring our favourite Christmas family meals, whether it be Dad’s famous roast pork or Nanna’s raspberry rum trifle.
Unfortunately, many of these Christmas classics can contain large amounts of sugar and unhealthy fats such as saturated and trans fats. Why does this matter? Well, research shows there is a clear relationship between ‘bad’ fats and heart disease. 1
Why do we need to consider what we eat for our heart health?
Unhealthy saturated and trans fats can significantly raise your risk of developing heart disease by decreasing levels of your “good” HDL cholesterol and increasing levels of “bad” LDL cholesterol.
This is especially important in relation to heart disease, as our “good” high-density lipoprotein (HDL) carries the cholesterol from bad fats to our liver to be removed. On the other hand, the “bad” low- density lipoprotein (LDL) takes cholesterol straight to our coronary arteries where it can cause plaque build-up, atherosclerosis, or result in a serious cardiac event. 2
Here are 6 Heart Healthy Christmas Recipes you can add to your shopping list this Christmas!
We are constantly reminded how important it is to consume the necessary portion of vegetables a day, and this heart healthy meal provides four of the five recommended. Vegetables are packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants which all work to slow down cholesterol plaque build-up within blood vessels. Cooked in one-tray, this roast is easy to prepare and serves many.
Fish has been proven to reduce the risk of heart disease through its high omega-3 fatty acid and protein content. Any variety of white fish can be used in this refreshing main, which is a unique and delicious option for your Christmas meal spread.
This delicious heart healthy recipe is low in both carbs and calories. Mushrooms are believed to have a positive impact on levels of both low- and high-density cholesterol. Additionally, some evidence suggests mushroom consumption can lower mean blood pressure. 3
This side dish is packed with various greens and a tasty nut butter. Green vegetables are known to lower overall cholesterol levels in the body, reducing the risk of cardiovascular problems. It only takes 15 minutes to try it for yourself.
Filled with stone fruit and berries, this heart healthy recipe is a healthier alternative to other Christmas dessert favourites. Fruits contain vital nutrients that can help reduce the impact of stress and inflammation contributing to heart conditions.
This heart healthy Christmas recipe swaps out some of the key pavlova ingredients with healthy alternatives. Lots of berries, limited sugar, and Greek yoghurt make this dessert better for your heart health while remaining just as delicious!
We encourage you to try these easy recipes for yourself this Christmas, ensuring you maintain a happy and healthy heart!
Remember that healthy living is for most people more achievable when it’s not entirely restrictive. Seek to find a balance between your traditional favourites and trying out some healthier alternatives as well.
Disclaimer This information is general and not conclusive. Follow any guidelines and advice from your doctor or specialist, health care, or multidisciplinary team, for your personalised patient-centred needs and care. Inquire about a patient advocate group regarding your specific needs. Call 000 if you are experiencing chest pain.
To find a GP or a Cardiologist near you, visit www.hopeforhearts.com.au
Connect the Docs www.connectthedocs.com.au is a medical marketing agency specialising in therapy awareness campaigns, educating medical professionals and patients about common conditions.