Truly Heart Healthy Food


In October, my husband had a heart attack. It was definitely a little scary, but we got him to the ER right away. Things happened so fast once we arrived, there wasn’t much time to be afraid. My husband’s cholesterol was a little high but not significantly, but he was high risk because his father had heart issues. He is tall, only a couple pounds over the recommended weight, and moderately active, so we heard a number of nurses surprised he had the attack. After a couple days in the hospital and all the information they gave, we came to the conclusion that the one thing that is completely within our control was his diet.
I won’t lie. Even though I didn’t like most processed meats and meals, my family seemed to and they were cheap. I would make a healthier meal here and there, but it wasn’t as healthy as I thought. I knew to look for “No Trans Fat” but I wasn’t really looking at the Saturated Fat, or the Sodium levels in the foods we were eating.
After the heart attack, I started looking at things more closely. After reading on the American Heart Association’s website that they recommend only 1500mg of sodium a day, with no more than 2300mg, I knew we were in for some big changes. My husband was trying to cut out sodium all together so I had to show him the AHA’s recommendation, and then I put a note on one of the cupboards that said, “1500mg per day, no more than 2300mg”. I would say he averages 1000mg a day, and his doctors are fine with that.
Since I am the one who does the grocery shopping, and almost all the cooking, I faced a big struggle right away. The level of sodium in just about everything is ridiculous. I found out that even the recipes I thought were healthy, had too much sodium. I jokingly told my husband that my new mission in life was to show that truly heart healthy eating didn’t mean it didn’t taste good.
I find recipes that look good and I modify them to reduce the sodium. Most of the recipes I am looking up are supposed to be healthy in the first place, but really are not. I started this site to have a place to share recipes with others, so they too can have great food that is truly heart healthy.  I don’t want anyone to be as frustrated as I was, and am still on occasion. But I refuse to shed tears over that frustration, wondering how I am supposed to take care of my husband when the world seems insistent that we load up on salt.
I promise to always credit where I found my recipes as I believe that credit should always be given to those who had the original recipe as well. If you send me a recipe, again, I will make sure to recognize you, even if I make changes.