Each Feb­ru­ary we focus on ways to improve our heart health in hon­or of Amer­i­can Heart Month. This year we want to help you by turn­ing your atten­tion to the foods you eat and how to make smart choic­es with our “This or That” challenge!

Below you will see two foods to choose between. Your goal is to choose the food that is the health­i­er option. Answers can be found at the end of the challenge.

 

 

Diet Soda vs Car­bon­at­ed Water 

Skip the drink with the high lev­els of arti­fi­cial sweet­en­ers and choose car­bon­at­ed water! Diet drinks have been linked to symp­toms of meta­bol­ic syn­drome. Some symp­toms of this include high blood pres­sure, high blood sug­ar, and low­er than nor­mal HDL cho­les­terol lev­els. Pour your­self a glass of car­bon­at­ed water and put a slice of fruit in your glass instead!

 

But­ter vs Olive Oil

Pour on the olive oil to main­tain good heart health. But­ter is full of high amounts of sat­u­rat­ed fat. But­ter is also known to raise the bad cho­les­terol lev­els in your blood. Olive oil and even canola and sun­flower oils con­tain heart healthy mono- and polyun­sat­u­rat­ed fats.

 

Sweet Pota­to Fries vs French Fries

Warm up your new Air Fry­er and start cook­ing sweet pota­to fries with a lit­tle olive oil. French fries are full of fat and salt and a study linked eat­ing 2–3 serv­ings of fries a week to a high­er chance of an ear­ly death.

 

1 oz Salt­ed Nuts vs 1 oz Pota­to Chips

Pass the pecans, please! When you choose nuts over chips, you are also choos­ing your health. Reg­u­lar nut snack­ers are 14% less like­ly to devel­op car­dio­vas­cu­lar dis­ease and 20% less like­ly to devel­op coro­nary heart disease.

 

1.5 oz Dark Choco­late vs 2 Choco­late Chip Cookies

No mat­ter how much you love Grandma’s cook­ie recipe, your heart needs you to choose the dark choco­late. A study has found that those peo­ple who eat dark choco­late 3 times a week reduce their risk of a heart attack or stroke by 11%.

 

T‑bone Steak vs Grilled Salmon Fillet

Just keep swim­ming! Just keep swim­ming! Salmon is chock full of omega 3 fat­ty acids which reduce fat in your blood and reduces clogged arter­ies. Steak is famous for high lev­els of sat­u­rat­ed fat and LDL cholesterol.

 

Coca-Cola vs Red Wine

Pop the cork, not the soda tab. Car­bon­at­ed sodas are full of arti­fi­cial ingre­di­ents and sug­ar. Red wine has been shown to increase your good cho­les­terol lev­els and has many antiox­i­dants that can help pro­tect the lin­ing of the blood ves­sels in your heart.

 

You are now a “This or That” Food Chal­lenge win­ner! Go cel­e­brate with a grilled salmon din­ner, a glass of red wine, and a hand­ful of dark chocolate!

 

Sources:

https://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/ss/slideshow-foods-bad-heart

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/wellness-and-prevention/5‑hearthealthy-food-swaps

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/heart-disease/in-depth/red-wine/art-20048281