Benefits: Chicken tenders are very low in saturated fat. The beans and corn offer plenty of fiber, including soluble fiber to help lower cholesterol. The tomatoes and salsa also provide antioxidants like lycopene, which helps protect your heart.
8. Turkey Burger: Better Than Fast Food
Lean ground turkey, 4 ounces per person
A dollop of tomato sauce
Whole wheat buns, 1 per person
Onions, tomatoes, and romaine lettuce on the side
Combine the turkey and tomato sauce. Mix in a few shakes of a salt-free seasoning blend, garlic powder, and pepper sauce if you like heat. Use your hands to shape the mixture into patties. Cook over medium-high heat, 5 minutes a side. Serve topped with onions, tomatoes, and romaine lettuce on a whole-grain bun.
Benefits: Choosing ground turkey over ground beef can save saturated fat and calories, and a whole-grain bun is an easy way to get fiber. The veggies provide additional fiber and beneficial nutrients. Romaine is a good source of vitamin C and beta carotene, both thought to protect heart health.
9. Simple Salmon: Easy and Impressive
Salmon, cut into 4-ounce portions
White wine or low-sodium chicken broth, a dash
Place salmon pieces in a baking dish coated with cooking spray. Add a splash of white wine or low-sodium chicken broth. Cover the dish tightly with foil. Bake in a 425-degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes, until the fish flakes easily. Serve with brown rice (consider microwave brown rice, which cooks in a flash) and lightly steamed asparagus.
Benefits: Salmon is full of heart-protective omega-3 fats, and brown rice is a delicious source of whole grains Asparagus has fiber as well as folate, which may help cut your odds of getting heart disease.
10. Garlicky Broccoli Pasta: Hearty and Heart-Warming
Garlic, 1 head, with cloves peeled and finely chopped
Broccoli, 1 head, chopped into bite-size pieces
Whole wheat linguini or spaghetti, cooked according to package directions
Sauté garlic (as much as you’d like) in a little olive oil. Meanwhile, steam broccoli lightly, and then sauté it briefly with the toasted garlic. Add red pepper flakes if you like a little heat. Toss the mixture with whole wheat pasta. Top with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese, and serve.