Dry Fruits For A Healthy Heart
Posted By HealthcareOnTime Team
Posted on 2022-04-05
Fruits - powerful healers of the
body and wonder foodstuffs bestowed upon us by nature!
Fruits are an appetising treat for each and every being
- animals, birds, insects and humans alike. Easy to carry
and store, fruits have been an indispensable part of our
meals since ages. Seasonal fruits or widely available fresh
fruits upon sun-drying or after being subjected to commercial
specialised drying procedures, lose their water content
completely. However, this process doesn't level down the
nutrient content in the resultant products, which are known
to us all as - Dry fruits, a self explanatory phrase that
definitely brings to one's mind, delicious crunchy almonds
and nuts in their favourite ice creams, salads, cakes or
Widely sought mainly as delicacies and though aren't juicy as their fresh counterparts, dry fruits are
abundant in nutriments. Packed with essential fatty acids, proteins, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals,
dry fruits aid in performing vital functions of our body such as maintaining health of crucial body organs,
improving hemoglobin levels, aiding Red blood cells formation, maintaining cholesterol levels and preventing
anemia. Such petite foodstuffs have a direct impact on many key functions that govern almost all the Metabolic
processes of the body! Not only these, dry fruits work wonders to keep the life-sustaining organ healthy which
tirelessly pumps blood to all parts of the body -Our heart!
GUIDE YOUR WAY TO CARDIOVASCULAR HEALTH!
An adult heart beats around 60-80 times per minute supplying about 5.7 liters of blood to the tissues and
organs in our body, which need constant supply of nutrition in order to remain active. A lot of factors
affecting the overall heart health include stress, High blood pressure and cholesterol levels, physical
inactivity, habits like Smoking, overeating, alcoholism, etc., and majorly contribute to heart diseases.
A heart-healthy diet requires nutrients like omega-3 fatty acids, dietary fiber, vitamin E, plant
sterols, L-arginine, etc. which can be acquired from various foods like fiber-rich whole grains, fishes,
legumes, fruits, vegetables and of course, via these tiny delicious, nutritional powerhouses - dry fruits!
DRY FRUITS MENU - TO KEEP YOUR HEART FIT!
Walnuts: Or the "wonder nuts" are known to have a significant impact on mitigating the major cardiovascular
risk factors by lowering bad cholesterol - Low density lipoprotein (LDL??) levels and diastolic blood pressure.
With highest content of omega-3 fatty acids (especially alphalinolenic acid (ALA) among all the dry fruits,
walnuts aid in decreasing the levels of inflammatory marker, C-reactive protein (CRP) in high-cholesterol
patients or those with irregular heartbeat. Even after a fatty meal, this wonder nut can aid to reduce
swelling, oxidation and plaque buildup in the arteries. Walnuts are also known to reduce levels of
apolipoprotein B, a strong genetic risk factor for coronary artery disease. Walnuts being a part of overall
eating program over a period, can drastically reduce the risk of an impending stroke, attack or occurrence
of any heart disease.
Almonds and Cashews: Favourite among the nut-eaters, these healthy post workout snacks are
abundant in calcium and fats! But do not fear, as its high-fat content mainly comprises of healthy unsaturated
(monounsaturated and polyunsaturated) fats, which aid in lowering the levels of bad cholesterol that form plaques
in coronary arteries, thus decreasing the risk of heart attacks. These nuts provide double-barreled protection
against both diabetes and cardiovascular diseases, with a high fiber content that improves blood flow keeping
blood sugar levels more stable and in control, while lessening the levels of cholesterol damaging free radicals.
They also keep the walls of arteries flexible and less prone to blood clots. A handful of almonds also provide
ample quantities of Magnesium which relaxes veins and arteries and potassium that aids in maintaining a normal
blood pressure and heart function. It boosts vitamin E levels preventing various infections, plaque formation
and also boosts serotonin levels fostering a good night's sleep.
Pistachios and Pecans: These have relatively high levels of healthy fats, antioxidants, vitamin B6 and plant
sterols that lower total and LDL cholesterol levels and also blood pressure, thus reducing the risk of diabetes
-related diseases in the arteries. It also improves the heart's response to stress along with heart function
Hazelnuts: Loaded with hearthealthy unsaturated fats along with oleic acid, they lower the
levels of bad cholesterol and raise the levels of good cholesterol - High density lipoprotein (HDL) in our body.
Rich in flavonoids, hazelnuts provide an antioxidant boost to the body with phytochemicals which improve
circulation and reduce allergies. Copious in vitamin B and E, hazelnuts also provide a bountiful supply of
ions: magnesium and potassium, for a healthy heart functioning.
Dates and Raisins: These are rich in vitamin B6, magnesium, potassium which are essential in
maintaining a steady heartbeat, relaxing heart vessels and reducing homocysteine levels ultimately
reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Their high fiber and antioxidant content reduces stiffness
of blood vessels, thereby even lowering blood pressure.
Apricots and Figs:
With a high level of polyphenol antioxidant's presence, apricots and figs help in preventing inflammation
and atherosclerosis, which decreases the risk of strokes. Dried apricots and figs contain higher amount of
potassium which in conjugation with low Sodium levels help in lowering the blood pressure, thus preventing
any impending cardiovascular ailments.
NUTS ARE GOOD, BUT CONSUME IN MODERATION!
Having either raw dried fruits or after soaked in
water, within dietary limits is undoubtedly heart healthy but it becomes detrimental when eaten in excess along
with sugary or salty toppings. Few fruits naturally have sugar content like raisins, dates, prunes, apricots,
figs, etc. which upon drying gets concentrated, therefore providing high calories, spiking blood sugar levels.
Its advisable to satisfy your cravings healthfully with a right and regular mix of a variety of delectable
flavoured dry fruits, avoiding the ones with added sugars, syrups and sweet yogurt toppings.
Wondering much how such small foodstuffs can have a profound impact, not only in maintaining body's overall
health, but also in keeping our heart healthy, functional and disease-free while being amazingly palatable
to our palates! Vital nutrients condensed in these small packages, Dry fruits are definitely a smart portable
choice for you and your heart!