An Apple A Day...Fiber For Heart Health

We’ve all heard the old saying, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away,” but do you know why apples are so good for you?

One reason is that they’re full of fiber. While proper diet helps combat numerous conditions, fiber plays an especially important role in lowering cholesterol and reducing other risks. When University of Minnesota scientists analyzed the results of 10 large, long-term studies, they found that for every 10 grams of fiber eaten daily, there was an average heart-disease risk reduction of 12 percent and a coronary death reduction of 19 percent.

There are two kinds of fiber, which is the part of fruits and vegetables your body can’t digest. Soluble fiber dissolves in water, turning into a gel. Soluble fiber mops up low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol from your bloodstream and flushes it from your system. Insoluble fiber helps move food through the intestines and keeps you regular. Experts recommend roughly 25 to 35 grams of both kinds of fiber daily.

Oatmeal is an excellent source of soluble fiber, with 4 grams of fiber per cup. Fruits, vegetables, nuts and legumes like apples, beans and peas are other good fiber sources. Choose whole-grain breads and cereals, as well as salads, to add more insoluble fiber.

Learn what you need to keep your heart healthy. Take Gwinnett Medical Center’s free heart health risk assessment online. Then share your results with your primary care physician. Or read past blog posts for more great tips for heart health


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