Heart Healthy Berry Diet

Eating a healthy diet can lower your risk of heart disease as much as 80%.

Packed with nutrients that naturally lower blood pressure, berries can also play a role in reducing inflammation and increasing “good” cholesterol.

Flavonoids are the dizzying variety of more than 6,000 compounds found in plants that give fruits and vegetables their vibrant blue, red and violet colors. They’re also powerful antioxidants, even more powerful than vitamin C or E, and research shows that these phytonutrients play a part in reducing the risk of heart disease. Among fruits, berries rank at the top in flavonoid content. When it comes to increasing the power of flavonoids, vitamin C serves an important role. When flavonoids are present, they help vitamin C be a more effective antioxidant. When there’s lots of vitamin C in the body, flavonoids do their job a little bit better.

Folate, a B-vitamin naturally found in fruits and vegetables, is also important when it comes to heart health. Research has shown that an amino acid called homocysteine is elevated in individuals who may be at risk for heart disease, and findings have concluded that folate can decrease homocysteine levels.

Strawberries are an especially good source of folate, and a smart food choice when included as part of a heart-healthy diet.