When thinking about heart health and living longer, doctors look at diets from the people in the world’s Blue Zones, where humans age the best and live the longest lives
While meat, eggs, and dairy seem to be the most popular protein in this country, that is a stark contrast to what people in these Blue Zones usually eat.
Here, we share what the best protein sources are for heart health, given the findings in these long-lived areas of the world.
The best proteins for heart health, which are cardiologist approved
1. Plant proteins like lentils, beans and chickpeas
Something these zones have in common is that plants are the bulk of their diets. Lentils, beans, chickpeas, along with tofu are all plant-based sources of proteins that are very common.
The longevity all-star is reported to be beans. If you are eating around a cup of beans each day, it is probably adding another four years to your life
Nuts are yet another form of protein for better heart health. They are also eaten a lot in these Blue Zones. The reason why they are so healthy for your ticker is because they are high in antioxidants (which helps your blood flow) and monounsaturated fats (connected to a lowered risk of heart disease).
Different kinds of nuts have their own nutritional makeup, but something they all share is that they are high in protein and great for your heart.
3. Wild fish and game
Though people in these Blue Zones eat a lot of plant-based foods, animal proteins are not entirely out of the question. In fact, wild fish and game (like bison or free-roaming cattle) are great sources of omega-3s and omega-6s, directly connected to lowering your risk of heart disease. It is, however, important to know where your fish are coming from.
When going for fish, doctors recommend choosing wild-caught. There are also some certifications to search for to ensure that the fish you are buying is sustainably sourced. The top one is the Marine Stewardship Council, which looks at account codes provided by the UN.
Author: Blake Ambrose