Heart Healthy Foods for Your Thanksgiving Table
Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and you know what that means: Parades, quality time with family and friends, and of course, the food. However, if you are focusing on eating heart-healthy recipes this holiday season, it may seem like you have to miss out on Thanksgiving’s most delicious dishes.
According to Healthline, the link between diet and heart disease keeps getting stronger. So, while choosing heart-healthy foods this Thanksgiving is a great idea, it doesn’t have to mean skipping all the wonderful flavors and tasty treats. Here are a few heart-healthy foods to add to your Thanksgiving table that will have everyone coming back for seconds.
Not only are fresh berries delightful, they are packed with antioxidants that protect against inflammation that can lead to heart disease. Top a bowl of fresh berries with sweet cream to create a heart-healthy dessert. Or throw some berries in a mixed salad for a pop of color. If all else fails, a simple bowl of fresh berries for the family to snack on is never a bad idea.
Leafy greens are an excellent source of Vitamin K, which encourages proper blood clotting. Leafy greens are the perfect starter for a side salad to compliment the rest of the meal. To top it all off, toss the greens in some olive oil and lemon juice for a simple heart-healthy dressing.
Avocados are well-known for lowering cholesterol and preventing heart disease. They are also the perfect complement to go in a turkey sandwich, on top of a salad, or as a spread on whole-wheat toast. Add some avocados to your Thanksgiving meal (or leftover turkey sandwiches) to slap on a hint of color, healthy fat and yummy flavor.
Who says roasted nuts are only for Christmas? Walnuts are full of magnesium, copper and manganese, and researchers believe they are helpful in preventing heart disease. Roasted nuts are an ideal appetizer to snack on while you put the final touches on your Thanksgiving feast. They are also a great topper for salads, casseroles and desserts.
Garlic is a tasty way to season just about anything in the kitchen. It leaves your house in a mouthwatering aroma, and gets everyone excited about the meal. Additionally, consuming garlic regularly is a proven method of lowering your blood pressure. For some people, it is even equivalent to certain blood pressure medications.
Add some savory garlic bread to your Thanksgiving menu, or use garlic to add extra flavor to your vegetables, turkey, or casserole dishes.
Whole grains are healthy, filling and delicious. They are also full of fiber that will help you lower your cholesterol. There is no wrong way to add whole grains to your Thanksgiving meal. Fill a basket with fresh, whole grain bread, offer whole grain crackers with a tasty spread, or even make oatmeal for a hearty breakfast on Thanksgiving morning. The possibilities are endless!
These are just a few of the many heart-healthy options you can add to your Thanksgiving meal this year. There is no need to avoid a big meal as long as you choose your ingredients wisely. Enjoy Thanksgiving and take care of your heart at the same time.