Choose Heart Healthy Mushrooms this Month

February. It’s already shaping up to be a very busy month! I mean, we’ve got the Super Bowl a few days away, Valentine’s Day in a little over a week, and Family Day (in most provinces)… so I think that it is very fitting that February is known as “Heart Month.

Of course we all want to keep the good ‘ol ticker in excellent shape, but just how do you go about it? Maintaining a healthy weight and keeping blood cholesterol in check are some of the best ways to keep your heart healthy. Eating more fruits and vegetables can also help protect our hearts against cardiovascular disease by providing vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fibre, as well as plant compounds called phytochemicals.

Fresh Mushrooms Can Help!

Watch the Weight
Mushrooms are a perfect choice for weight management, since they have high water content, are low in fat and contain fibre: three factors that help you feel full with fewer calories (that means less room for calorie-laden foods).

Cut the Cholesterol
Fresh mushrooms contain both soluble and insoluble fibre. Soluble fibre has been shown to help prevent and manage cardiovascular disease by lowering the levels of total and LDL cholesterol.

Adding the Antioxidants
Fresh mushrooms contain significant levels of l-ergothioneine, which acts as an antioxidant. Ergothioneine doesn’t break down when it’s heated, which means you can enjoy mushrooms raw or cooked!

Mushrooms Make a Difference

  • Add ½ cup white button mushrooms as a side to chicken. Benefit: one 1 extra gram of fibre.
  • Mix 1 cup of diced portabella mushrooms into risotto. Benefit: three 3 extra grams of fibre.
  • Include 1½ cups sliced crimini (brown) mushrooms in pasta sauce. Benefit: five 5 extra grams of fibre.

For more about heart health visit the Heart & Stroke Foundation of Canada.

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