A plant-based diet rich in olive oil and tomatoes may lower the risk of heart disease

  • New research confirms that eating vegetables can help prevent heart disease.
  • Two servings of vegetables a day can reduce your risk of dying from heart disease by 34%.
  • Reducing the amount of processed meat and eating red meat and oil in moderation can also help.

Heart disease
is an one of the leading causes of death in the United States. To avoid this, according to a meta-analysis posted on July 6 in Cardiovascular Research

Researchers from the University of Naples analyzed nearly 100 studies on the link between heart disease risk and dietary habits. They focused on specific food categories such as red meat, poultry, eggs, dairy products, foods, nuts, and grains.

They found that following a mostly plant-based diet high in vegetables and low in meat was associated with better heart health and a lower risk of dying from heart disease.

In particular, cutting back on butter and red meat in favor of leafy greens, tomatoes, and olive oil, in particular, may protect your heart, according to research.

Processed meat is the main culprit in heart disease risk

The study found a clear link between higher chances of developing heart disease and diets high in processed meatsuch as sausage, salami and bacon. To protect your heart, research suggests eating processed meat only occasionally, less than two servings per week.

According to the data, red meat is also significantly associated with the risk of heart disease, although the risk is less obvious. The study concluded that replacing red meat with other protein sources is beneficial for heart health.

The study found that butter was not directly associated with a significant risk of heart disease in moderation. However, the researchers noted that it contains a lot of dietary fats that can jeopardize heart health and found that replacing it with olive oil reduced the risk of disease.

Research has shown that fish and chicken are not associated with the same risks, suggesting that it may be normal to include certain animal foods in a healthy diet.

Leafy green vegetables and tomatoes are good for your heart

According to the study, eating at least two servings of vegetables a day was associated with a 34% lower risk of dying from heart disease. The most beneficial are leafy green vegetables and tomatoes.

Fruit is also beneficial for heart health, although the fruit itself matters. Fruits that are high in fiber and micronutrients, such as apples, berries, and citrus fruits, are best for you.

Research has shown that processed fruits such as juice and canned fruits can actually increase your risk of heart disease.

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