Heart disease can negatively affect your health in a multitude of ways and increases the risk for serious health concerns such as stroke and cardiac arrest. For this reason, patients who suffer from heart failure are encouraged to make serious lifestyle changes. This includes a rigorous and consistent exercise routine, and a better diet.

If you are suffering from heart disease, you may not realize the implications of a poor diet to your wellbeing. But any heart specialist and doctor in Dubai will tell you that certain foods are toxic for those with pre-existing or borderline heart conditions.

Maintaining a healthy diet and eliminating poor food choices from your daily rotation can have a huge, positive impact on your heart health. This will lead to an overall healthier and happier life.

So, here are foods to avoid if you are suffering from heart failure:

1. Processed Meats

Processed meats such as deli chicken, beef, sausages, salami, and hot dogs are packed with salt and saturated fats that are known for clogging arteries. In fact, high consumption of red meats such as beef and mutton, can also worsen heart health.

Such processed and red meats are best to be avoided, but if you must eat them, try to limit consumption to not more than two times a week, and eat smaller quantities.

Healthier Alternatives:

  • Lean meats
  • Fish
  • Plant Based Proteins

2. Sodium

High amounts of salt are the enemy of those with heart failure. This is because too much sodium leads to fluid retention in the body, along with high levels of blood pressure. This is extremely harmful for heart patients and can lead to serious complications.

While it may seem impossible to completely eliminate sodium from your diet, Dr. Laure Bruchou, a Specialist Cardiologist at the German Heart Centre in Dubai, recommends taking steps to cut down. This includes avoiding fast foods, processed junk foods and frozen dinners, and instead opting for home cooked meals where you can control the sodium levels.

Healthier Alternatives:

  • Fresh rather than processed foods
  • Home cooked meals seasoned with herbs and spices rather than salt
  • Canned and frozen foods labelled “sodium free”

3. Highly Processed Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates that are highly refined, such as white bread, white pasta, processed cereals, and pastries, are stripped of their healthy dietary fiber, minerals, phytochemicals, and fatty acids. According to Dr. Byron Kalliatakisspecialist cardiologist at the German Heart Centre, this is especially harmful for heart patients who also have high cholesterol or diabetes.

At the same time, these healthy nutrients are replaced by ingredients that are disastrous for heart health, such as trans fats, sugar, and sodium. That is not to say that you can indulge in a slice of cake or dessert, but it should be limited as an occasional treat, and whole grains should be preferred.

Healthier Alternatives:

  • Whole grain cereal, bread, and pastas
  • Limit sweet treats to once a week in small portions
  • Prefer less processed carbohydrate options

4. Saturated Fats

Saturated fats are a type of fat in which the fatty acid chains have all or predominantly single bonds. It is commonly found in foods such as red meat, dairy, butter, junk foods and processed snacks, energy drinks, and fast food items.

High levels of saturated fat in your diet can spike bad cholesterol (LDL) levels, which results in plaque buildup in the arteries.

This does not mean that all fats are bad. In fact, every heart specialist and doctor in Dubai agrees that certain essential fats, such as polyunsaturated and monosaturated fats, can actually improve heart health.

Healthier Alternatives:

  • Monosaturated fats such as olive oil, canola oil, avocados, and nuts
  • Polyunsaturated fats such as sunflower oil and corn oil
  • Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish and nuts

Avoiding these foods may seem difficult but will have a profound effect on your overall health. And for patients of serious heart failure, avoiding these foods can actually be life-saving. It is always best to consult with the best cardiologist in Dubai in order to make the best dietary choices for your heart condition.

Where to Find the Best Heart Specialist and Doctor in Dubai?

The German Heart Centre is among the best heart specialist hospitals in Dubai. Our team of doctors consist of the best cardiologist in Dubai, visit Professor Dr. Uwe KlimaDr. Gehad El GergawyDr. Byron KalliatakisDr. Caspar A BoernerDr. Laure Bruchou or Dr. Beate Wild  at the German Heart Centre. Book an appointment today to learn more about improving heart health for a longer and happier life.


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