How Does Arteries Get Clogged?
A clogged artery is defined as the hardening or thickening of the arteries. The endothelial cells allow the blood to flow naturally. But some factors like free radicals, increased homocysteine levels, platelet levels and vitamin C deficiency can cause the hardening of the arteries.
When there is a waste overload from the food, we intake, clogging of arteries becomes a common problem. This is called plaque build-up in arteries and can lead to several health problems like an improper flow of oxygen to various organs, heart problems, increase in blood pressure and blood cholesterol, among several other complications .
Plaque is formed when certain substances are unable to get out of the arteries. Factors like type 1 and type 2 diabetes, insulin resistance, smoking and hypertension are also known to be damaging for the arteries. It does not usually cause any symptoms and is difficult to diagnose . The symptoms of a clogged artery depend on the type of artery that is affected.
Doctors and nutritionists point out that clogged arteries can be prevented by consuming certain foods that help unclog the arteries and keep them clean . Continue reading this article to know more about the top foods that help prevent heart attack and unclog the arteries.
This spice contains curcumin which contains cardio-protective properties and helps reduce damage to the artery walls. Turmeric extract is known to reduce LDL cholesterol and plaque build-up in the arteries .
How to eat: You can add turmeric to your diet is by making turmeric tea or golden milk.
Garlic has been proven to prevent heart disease, slow down atherosclerosis and lower the blood pressure levels. Garlic is quite effective in preventing plaque build-up in the arteries. Garlic is one of the top foods to prevent heart attack .
How to eat: You can mince some garlic and add to your soups, rice or curries.
Ginger contains potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It contains gingerols and shogaols that are powerful heart-protective compounds. Ginger extract can prevent the clogging of the blood vessels and thereby prevent heart attacks .
How to eat: Drink ginger tea, use ginger paste while cooking, use it along with garlic or simply suck on a piece of ginger every day.
4. Cayenne Pepper
The spicy chilly contains capsaicin that prevents LDL cholesterol naturally. It helps reduce the risk of heart attack, stroke and improves blood circulation. It is the best when it comes to cleaning the arteries. It is one of the best foods for having clean arteries .
How to eat: You can enjoy the benefits of cayenne pepper by adding small amounts to curries or stews.
Lemon helps in lowering the cholesterol levels, prevents oxidative damage and keeps the arteries healthy. It contains vitamin C that reduces inflammation and strengthens the arteries . Health experts say that most of the citrus fruits are beneficial for your artery health as they are packed with both antioxidants and vitamin C.
How to eat: Drink plenty of lemon water throughout the day or drink a glass of freshly squeezed orange or grapefruit juice every day.
Cinnamon help reduce the risk factors related to atherosclerosis and heart disease. Six grams of cinnamon a day can lower LDL cholesterol, triglyceride levels, etc. It is considered to be one of the top foods that can unclog arteries .
How to eat: Grind the cinnamon and sprinkle it on your coffee/tea or you can use it in cooking as a flavouring agent.
Flax seeds contain a high-fibre content that helps unclog arteries. It contains The omega-3s and lignans that reduce both blood pressure and inflammation; it also keeps the plaque from being deposited in the blood vessels .
How to eat: You can add a tablespoon of ground flaxseed to your hot or cold breakfast cereal, add it mayonnaise, yoghurt or bake cookies, slices of bread, and muffins with flaxseed.
8. Sesame Seeds
Regular consumption of sesame seeds can help prevent the development of atherosclerosis. Sesame oil contains fatty content that reduces LDL cholesterol levels and triglycerides. Studies have found that sesame oil can prevent or reduce the development of the build-up of plaque in the artery walls .
How to eat: You can add sesame seeds to your salad, rice, soups and even ice creams.
9. Olive Oil
Another important artery cleansing food is olive oil. This, again, is found to reduce the bad cholesterol due to the high content of mono and polyunsaturated fats. The healthy fat in olive oil can protect your heart health and reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases .
How to eat: You can drizzle some olive oil on salads, stir-fried vegetables etc. To gain health benefits, make sure you buy 100 per cent extra virgin olive oil.
10. Pomegranate Juice
The juice of pomegranate has been linked with reduced risk of clogged arteries . Pomegranate juice contains punicic acid that helps unclog arteries naturally and fights atherosclerosis. It contains heart-friendly nutrients like selenium and magnesium as well .
How to eat: You can sprinkle the seeds on oatmeal or make pomegranate juice with no added sugar.
11. Coffee/Green Tea
Rejoice, coffee drinkers! Drinking three cups of black coffee a day can significantly lower your risk for developing clogged arteries . The caffeine in coffee help prevents the accumulation of plaque in the arteries. If coffee is not your thing, worry not, studies assert that green tea has also been proven beneficial to cardiovascular health .
Note: While drinking three glasses of coffee a day can help prevent clogged arteries, avoid adding any sugar or cream.
Avocado has been found to be one of the best artery cleansing foods. Regular consumption of this exotic fruit has proven to considerably reduce the bad cholesterol (LDL) and increase the good cholesterol (HDL), preventing the formation of clogged arteries .
How to eat: Add avocado to salads, sandwiches, or drink avocado juice every day (without sugar).
Broccoli is rich in Vitamin K, and when it is added to your diet regularly, the green vegetable help cleanse the arteries, thereby regulating the high cholesterol and high blood pressure in your body . Cruciferous vegetables, such as cauliflower, and cabbage, have been proven to help prevent clogged arteries specifically.
How to eat: Boil some broccoli with a pinch of salt and pepper or add stir-fried broccoli as a side dish.
14. Whole Grains
Whole grains are a rich source of fibre. They have the capability of binding all the cholesterol from your blood and purge it out of your body . Brown rice, oatmeal, and whole-wheat bread are some of the foods which contain soluble fibre and are great artery cleansing foods.
How to eat: The recommended daily intake is 25 grams of fibre each day for women and 34 grams per day for men.
Nuts are found to be a great source of Vitamin E, omega-3 fatty acids and fibre, which can help cleanse your arteries . Studies also point out that nuts are filled with monounsaturated fats, minerals and selenium that are associated with a 15 to 57 per cent less risk of heart disease.
How to eat: Doctors recommend three to five servings of nuts per week.
16. Fatty Fish
Yes, fat is not good for your arteries. But experts point out that consuming the right kind of fat can help improve your heart health . Fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids are the best and safe option here, as they help lower LDL, blood pressure and maintains the blood vessel elasticity.
How to eat: Eat salmon tuna or mackerel, one to four times a week.
Some of the other foods that are beneficial your arteries are as follows:
On A Final Note…
Healthy eating and living can make a huge difference to your lifestyle and can prevent you from the risk of heart attacks. As long as the blood vessels are clean and well-functioning, blood can flow freely. Consuming these foods on a regular and controlled basis can help in preventing the additional plaque from forming.