Eat Right

Be Good to Your Bod: 6 foods that are fab for your heart!

February is American Heart Month. To celebrate, we picked our 6 fave foods that'll show your ticker lots o' love. Treating your bod right lasts wayyy longer than than a box of chocolates, girl.

1. Oatmeal
Start your day with fiber-stacked oatmeal and you'll feel energized for hours. The fiber in oatmeal is actually known to lower LDL (bad cholesterol). Skip the sugary packages—it takes two extra seconds to make the old-fashioned, whole grain kind.  Give your bowl a boost by topping it with some cinnamon, sliced bananas or slivered almonds.

2. Strawberries
Strawberries are delish, not to mention healthy. This right-on red fruit is filled with anti-inflammatories, which can help your bod repair and up your immune system. Throw 'em on top of plain yogurt or eat them with a piece of dark chocolate.

3. Salmon
Salmon is loaded with omega-3s to keep your heart pumping strong. Try for two servings of a fatty fish (tuna counts, too) a week. Time to hightail it to the sushi bar, babe.

4. Olive Oil
Ok, so clearly you're not gonna chug this stuff ('cause that's not healthy). But the Mediterranean staple lowers bad cholesterol and reduces your chance of heart disease. Swap creamy salad dressings (sorry, ranch) for a light drizzle of olive oil and some lemon juice or balsamic vinegar. Oh, and instead of buttering up those veggies? A dab of olive oil does the trick, and is better for ya.

5. Nuts
Nuts (especially walnuts, almonds and cashews) may be loaded with calories, but they are also filled with good fats. Pop some right outa the can, or mix them with cereal and dried fruit for some yummy homemade trail mix. A fam fave? Mix handful of nuts (I love walnuts) with ½ cup high fiber cereal, ½ cup dried fruit (cranberries or raisins) and a handful of semi-sweet chocolate chips. The sweet and salty combo is so yummy.

Healthy Tip: Look for reduced sodium or no salt added nuts when shopping for a better choice.

6. Dark Chocolate
Studies have shown that a small daily dose of dark chocolate can actually be good for ya. The flavonoids in the cocoa might actually help prevent certain diseases. A couple of Special Dark Hershey's Kisses are the perfect dose. Love it!

By: Rachel Chemerynski 
2/20/2009 2:06:00 PM