February is Heart Health Month, and my family celebrates the same way we do the rest of the year – with beef. Here, some food for thought on including lean beef in a heart-healthy diet, backed by none other than the American Heart Association.
Disclosure: this post is brought to you in partnership with Northeast Loves Beef Promotion Initiative. As always, thoughts are my own, and my love and support of the beef community is genuine. Thank YOU for your support of Enjoy Food Enjoy Life!
“What should I make when you come up?” This is the question posed to me by my mom, prior to every trip I make up the highway to her home in the mountains of upstate New York. She knows the answer is always going to be steak, since I live in a condominium with no balcony and therefor no grill (don’t feel too badly for me – I’m a five minute walk from the ocean).
My mother never bats an eye, despite the fact that my dad has familial history of heart disease. She shops confidently for extra lean cuts of beef for the grill, all of which have been certified by the American Heart Association and bear its Heart-Check Mark on the Beef It’s What’s For Dinner Website. Knowing that these cuts are provide 10 essential nutrients, including zinc, iron, and protein, she can serve them as part of an overall heart-healthy diet.
If you’d like to know more about how a diet including beef can actually help lower cholesterol, check out the BOLD study, in which participants who consumed lean beef daily as part of an overall heart-healthy diet showed a 10% decline in LDL (bad) cholesterol. Pretty impressive!
So what else does my mom do to keep dad’s ticker up and running so he’ll be enjoying beef with us for the long run? Focus on rounding out your meals with plenty of vegetables, whole grains (she starts him off with old-fashioned oats topped with walnut and banana every morning), and low fat dairy. Minimize alcohol consumption (you know I’m on board with that!), and get active! The American Heart Association recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week.
Beef It’s What’s For Dinner also features 20 recipes bearing the American Heart Association Heart-Check Mark, including the Spicy Korean Beef and Cucumber Appetizer I’ve prepared over on IGTV. Come check it out!
Enjoy your food – including beef! Enjoy your life!