Heart Health and Protein
The heart is the hardest working muscle in the human body. It is responsible for pumping blood to all of our organs and muscles, providing oxygen and nourishment. You probably know that exercise, watching your cholesterol and not smoking is important to keep your heart healthy. But do you know the role protein has to keep your heart beating strong? Here we explore five different types of protein and their role in heart health.
Legumes (also known as pulses) are a plant-based source of protein. Research has found that they can help to lower total cholesterol levels, which can lower your risk of heart disease (1). One study in 2016 found a 10% decreased risk of heart disease by having 3-4 serves of legumes per week (2). Good sources of legumes include chickpeas, black beans, lentils, soybeans and split peas.
- Fish and Seafood
Fish and seafood have consistently been linked with lower rates of heart disease. It is a protein source that is low in saturated fat and rich in omega 3s. It is recommended to have 2-3 serves of oily fish per week (e.g. salmon, sardines, tuna, mackerel). Fresh, canned or frozen are all suitable options! (1)
You probably have heard that eggs are high in cholesterol. Did you know that the cholesterol in eggs has minimal effect on blood cholesterol? That’s right, research has shown that eggs are safe to eat every week! The Heart Foundation does recommend a maximum of seven eggs per week for those with (1):
- High LDL cholesterol
- Type 2 diabetes
- Existing heart disease
- Red meat
Red meat is a nutrient-dense protein source, containing iron, zinc and vitamin B12. However, evidence has shown that high red meat consumption increases the risk of heart disease and should be limited to 350 grams (or 1-3 meals) of lean red meat per week. It is also important to remove all visible fat before cooking to reduce total saturated fat intake (1).
- Whey Protein
Whey protein is a complete protein, renowned for its involvement in muscle protein synthesis and muscle repair. A randomised control trial in 2016 found daily consumption of whey proteins reduced blood pressure and other risk markers of cardiovascular disease (3). If you need assistance choosing a whey protein, Boomers is here to help!
See our quiz here to help you understand how much protein you need and the best option based on your dietary needs.
Picking your proteins
It is important to know that no single food or nutrient is the key to heart health! It is a combination of diet, exercise and lifestyle factors combined. Opting for healthier proteins can help to minimise your risk of heart disease.
To support Heart Health, Boomers protein will be donating $2 from every sale in September to the Heart Foundation on September 29th (World Heart Day).
Check out our full product range here!