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The One Food To Eat To Avoid Heart Disease, According to RDs

This tasty treat is full of health benefits!
Breakfast quinoa bowl with bananas and blueberries

It may be hard to believe, but one of the smallest foods you eat can actually be the one food that can help lower your risk of heart disease. So what is that tiny food? Why it's the humble blueberry! Blueberries have been scientifically proven to be a food to avoid heart disease because it's known to be a good source of polyphenols that can help with cardiovascular risk and disease prevention.

"I like to grab a boost of blue with blueberries. A growing body of scientific evidence demonstrates that blueberries can be part of eating patterns to improve cardiovascular health, especially as part of an overall healthy lifestyle," says Maya Feller, MS, RD, CDN of Brooklyn-based Maya Feller Nutrition. "Blueberries contain beneficial vitamins (such as C, K, manganese and potassium) and are a great source of fiber, contain 3.6 grams of fiber per serving. Blueberries are actually certified as heart-healthy through the American Heart Association Heart-Check Food Certification Program."

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The micronutrients and fiber are important health benefits that come from blueberries, as well as anthocyanins, a polyphenol that studies have proven to significantly improve your health and makes it the best food to avoid heart disease. It's also the compound in blueberries that give them that rich, dark blue color that we know and love.

"Beyond their tangy sweetness, blueberries offer a wealth of health benefits," says Anya Guy, RD for Mayo Clinic, in an online interview with the clinic. "Blueberries, in particular, have about 25 different anthocyanins; whereas, other berries might just have two or three."

One study published by Nutrition Reviews shows the significant amount of anthocyanins in blueberries, and also proves how anthocyanins are a key nutrient that can assist with any cardiovascular risks one may have. That's because the anthocyanins are an anti-inflammatory and can help lower LDL cholesterol, according to a study by the journal Nutrients.

Plus, the anthocyanins in blueberries can help lower blood pressure, according to Harvard Health. High blood pressure a significant cause of developing heart disease later in life, so snacking on blueberries is probably one of the best things you can do for yourself. No wonder blueberries are considered The One Snack Food To Eat for a Longer Life!

So next time you whip up a bowl of oatmeal or you're craving a yogurt parfait for breakfast, top that bowl with some blueberries. Because they may be small, but their health benefits can really impact your heart health and your longevity!

Here's What Happens to Your Body When You Eat a Cup of Blueberries Every Day.

Kiersten Hickman
Kiersten Hickman is a senior editor at Eat This, Not That!, with a main focus on food coverage, nutrition, and recipe development. Read more