4 dinners a cardiologist eats to keep her heart healthy

4 dinners a cardiologist eats to keep her heart healthy

  • Cardiologist Dr. Elizabeth Klodas follows a “plant-forward diet” and eats lots of vegan foods.
  • Plant-based diets have been linked to a lower risk of cardiovascular problems.
  • Klodas shared the dinners she regularly cooks to keep her heart healthy.

A cardiologist has shared the dinners she eats to keep her heart healthy.

Dr. Elizabeth Klodas said that nutrition is one of the most important factors for keeping your cholesterol levels down and your heart healthy.

According to the American Heart Association, eating a “heart-healthy” diet is important for managing blood pressure and reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke. This includes reducing red meat intake and eating lots of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

Klodas follows a “plant-forward diet” meaning she eats lots of vegan foods, sometimes fish, and occasionally meat.

“Although I’m not perfect,” she added, saying she’s an “aspiring vegetarian.”

She said the more she’s delved into the information on nutrition and cardiovascular disease, the more she believes that a whole food, plant-based diet is the answer to a healthy heart. But she said a vegan diet isn’t for everyone because it’s not always realistic and not everyone feels great on it.

Klodas added that despite eating a whole-food diet most of the time, she also likes to indulge in chips, french fries, hash browns, or ice cream. This is usually once a month or so.

It’s not sustainable to eat a perfect diet all the time, she said.

Klodas spoke to Insider about what dinners she regularly cooks to keep her heart healthy.

A giant salad

Klodas said she regularly enjoys “a giant salad” for her dinner.

In her salads, she’ll have vegetables, berries, and whatever’s in her “head and fridge.”

“It’ll be enough for four people,” she joked. For protein, she might throw in some chickpeas. Sometimes she adds smoked salmon or an egg, but she tends to keep it plant-based.

For the dressing, she’ll add olive oil and vinegar. She uses white wine vinegar, while lemon-infused olive oil is her secret ingredient — but finds red wine vinegar can be overpowering.

Research suggests that vegan diets may lower the risk of heart attack, stroke, and heart failure, particularly in middle age, and lower cholesterol levels in postmenopausal women, reducing the risk of heart disease.

Salmon with vegetables

While she tends to eat plant-based a lot of the time, Klodas does enjoy fish.

“I love salmon in all presentations,” she said.

She likes to slow-roast salmon and eat it alongside vegetables and sometimes pasta. Occasionally, she’ll switch the salmon up for a piece of chicken, but that is rare, she said.

Eating fish is a key part of the Mediterranean diet, which research suggests protects our cardiovascular health.

Baked pasta with tomato sauce and shrimp

Klodas said she likes to eat orzo pasta dishes.

She has a recipe where the pasta is topped with tomato sauce, basil, and shrimp and then baked.

For times when she’s in a rush, Dr. Klodas also has a jar of pesto ready to go that she can throw together with some pasta and shrimp to make an easy dinner.

A cardiologist previously told Insider that complex carbs like oats, brown rice, and wholegrain pasta are directly linked with better heart health.

Chicken or beef chilli, occasionally

Klodas said she no longer finds meat appealing. “I’ve gotten away from it over time. And I don’t miss it,” she said. But she does cook still cook meat occasionally.

The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet recommended by the AHA limits red meat to decrease the risk of heart disease, while lean meats, poultry, and fish are preferable.

When Klodas eats meat, she chooses chicken or sometimes beef, for instance in a chilli. These are the kinds of foods she might prepare for a dinner party.


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