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(KOLKATA (Calcutta), India)

I was transferred to Kolkata and I started eating prawns rich in cholesterol and fat rich foods.

Once when I went for my regular checkup the total cholesterol and triglyceride levels were very high. I consulted a cardiologist who suggested a healthy heart diet.

He suggested that the ideal way to prevent heart disease is to take plenty of exercise and a healthy diet rich in fibers and low in saturated fats.

The steps he advised for TARLA DALAL heart healthy diet were:

Limit the intake of fats: Reducing the intake of saturated fats like butter, coconut oil and trans fats like hydrogenated oil are essential in reducing the cholesterol level thereby reducing heart disease. Monounsaturated fats like olive oil and polyunsaturated fats like vegetable oil, oily fish are good for the heart if taken in moderation.

Eat fresh fruits and vegetables. Fresh fruits are valuable source of antioxidants and vitamin C that protects against heart diseases. Fruits esp. bananas and dry fruits are rich in potassium which regulates the blood pressure thereby controlling the body’s fluid balance. Intake of garlic in the diet reduces the blood cholesterol level.

Eat whole grain foods like whole wheat bread, brown rice. Oats are good for breakfast as it is rich in dietary fiber. These carbohydrates are digested slowly and provide a constant supply to the body. Different nutrients found in the whole grain are necessary for controlling blood pressure.

Eat iron rich foods like leafy green vegetables iron is necessary for the formation of hemoglobin.

Low salt diet helps in reducing the blood pressure. Avoid canned foods as they contain salt as preservatives.

Stay hydrated: Six to eight glasses of water is essential for the normal functioning of the body. You can substitute fresh fruit juices, coconut water, buttermilk, lassi etc.

I strictly adhered to this routine and followed it religiously for six months. Now I had my medical tests done and all the lipid profile, liver function test etc were within normal limits.

I am now trying to stick to my diet. Eating in moderation, at regular intervals in small quantities is ideal to stay healthy and fit. So I would recommend this heart healthy diet for people.

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Note from Dr. Dan


Good to hear how well this program worked for you.

Regarding salt and high blood pressure: it's true that some people -- particularly those with heart failure -- are sensitive to salt.

But many people are not sensitive to salt, and in those people salt does not affect the blood pressure.

After all, salt is essential to life. It's so valuable that throughout history wars have been fought over salt.

By the way, for readers who don't know, Surama mentions Tarla Dalal. Tarla Dalal is the best selling cookbook author in India.

Dr. Dan

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