Congestive Heart Failure (CHF) and Heart-Healthy Diet
What is typically called a "heart-healthy diet" involves limiting sodium, certain types of fat, and cholesterol, while emphasizing more healthful foods, such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and lean meats.
Because of the link between diabetes and heart disease, some experts consider a low-glycemic diet or low-carbohydrate diet to be the most heart-healthy option. To find what works best for you, talk with your doctor, investigate your options, and experiment.
Effect of Heart-Healthy Diet on Congestive Heart Failure (CHF)
This diet is believed to have many benefits for the heart, including helping to keep blood pressure, cholesterol, and triglyceride levels in a healthy range.
How to Use Heart-Healthy Diet
This diet involves limiting certain foods (those that are high in cholesterol, sodium, and some fats) and emphasizing others, such as whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, and lean meats. For more details and tips, see the full article on Heart-Healthy Diet.
Types of Professionals That Would Be Involved with This Treatment
It can be challenging to alter your diet, especially if you are trying to make big changes. Consider working with a nutritionist or dietitian to create a customized eating plan that is most likely to fit you and your life. Your doctor or naturopath may also have resources on heart-healthy eating.
Side Effects and Warnings
Modifying your diet to make it more healthful should have few, if any, side effects. If you have a serious health condition, consult with your physician or another trusted health provider before you make any drastic changes.
For many years, the American Heart Association and other major institutions have recommended cutting down on saturated fat and increasing carbohydrates. However, growing evidence suggests that it is preferable to keep carbohydrate levels relatively low while replacing saturated fat with monounsaturated fats such as olive oil. For more information, see the low-carbohydrate diet article.
American Dietetic Association. Nutrition Care Manual. American Dietetic Association website. Available at: http://nutritioncaremanual.org . Accessed December 8, 2009.
American Heart Association website. Available at: http://www.americanheart.org . Accessed January 12, 2006.
Shield J, Mullen MC. Patient education materials. Supplement to the Manual of Clinical Dietetics . 3rd ed. Chicago, IL: American Dietetic Association; 2001.