Heart Health

By Lauren Wills, Manager of Essential Eating

February is heart month! Did you know that heart disease is the second leading cause of death in Canada? (Statistics Canada, 2009) Show your heart some love this month with these heart healthy cooking swaps and nutrition tips!

Get the Facts on Fat


Fat an a many essential roles in our bodies. Did you know we require fat to absorb some vitamins and minerals? Instead of trying to remove fats from your diet, try switching to more heart healthy sources by:

  • Swapping out butter or hydrogenated margarine in cooking for heart healthy options like canola oil or olive oil.

  • Adding creaminess to sauces and soups through the addition of Greek yogurt or evaporated milk instead of heavy cream.

  • Snacking on unsalted nuts and seeds instead of chips or rich baked goods.

  • Making homemade guacamole using ripe avocados to replace chip dip

Fill up on Fibre

Fibre is not only a great way to keep you satiated, it can also help to lower cholesterol and control blood sugar levels. You can get more fibre by:

  • Replacing half the white flour for whole wheat flour in your recipes.

  • Top your oatmeal or favourite yogurt with 1-2 Tbsp of oat bran, flax seed, chia seeds, or hemp hearts.

  • Aim to fill half your plate with vegetables at lunch and

  • Try adding a meatless meal to your weekly routine. Legumes, like chickpeas, lentils and beans, are a great source of both fibre and protein

Swap out Sugar

Did you know that the average Canadian consumes 26 tsp of sugar per day? (Statistics Canada, 2015) Cutting down on added sugar can help protect your heart.

  • Low fat foods often contain added sugar to help enhance the flavor of the product. Compare sugar content on food labels to find the product with the fewest grams of

  • Make water your beverage of choice. A glass of juice or pop can have up to 10 tsp of added sugar (more than a whole days worth!).

Is dark chocolate good for my heart?

Dark chocolate has been deemed ‘heart healthy’ in recent research, mainly due to the rich flavonoid content and the resulting antioxidant properties. While dark chocolate may have some positive effects, consider choosing foods that are rich in flavonoids that do not contain as much fat or sugar, such as fruits and vegetables like berries or onions!

Oven Puffed Eggs

Yield 4 to 6 servings


Fruit Mixture:

  • 3 Tbsp margarine

  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar

  • 1 cup canned fruit (liquid drained)

  • 1 tsp brown sugar for sprinkling



  • 3 large eggs

  • 3/4 cup milk

  • 1/2 cup flour

  • 1 Tbsp sugar

  • 1/4 tsp salt

  • 1/4 tsp baking powder

  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon(optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 425ºF

  2. Put margarine and brown sugar in square baking dish (or 9 inch flan pan), and place in preheated oven. As soon as margarine is melted, arrange fruit in pan. Return to oven and heat until mixture is bubbling.

  3. In the meantime, put batter ingredients in a bowl and mix well.

  4. Take fruit mixture out of oven and pour batter over fruit and sprinkle top with a bit of brown sugar.

  5. Return to oven and bake for 20 minutes or until top is puffed and golden brown.

  6. Serve immediately. Can be topped with yogurt. Also great served cold

For more information:

Email: lauren@thisishealthful.ca

Phone: 613-828-8586

Visit: 16-2150 Robertson Rd. Bells Corners

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