Amy Shapiro, MS, RD, CDN, of Real Nutrition in New York City joined us here at Well+Good to share some of her go-to heart-healthy picks from Trader Joe's!
Here are some micronutrients & macronutrients Shapiro suggests including in a heart-healthy diet:
– Fiber (whole grains, fruits, and vegetables) – Omega-3 fatty acids (sardines, salmon, trout, and seeds) – Lean, high-quality protein (fish, poultry, and legumes) – Healthy fats (non-tropical vegetable oils, nuts, and seeds) – Antioxidants (fresh or frozen produce, olive oil, dark chocolate)
Shapiro recommends pairing these crunchy crackers—which pack three grams of fiber and four grams of protein per crispbread—with cheese, hummus, and/or a veggie plate for a well-balanced snack.
Shapiro loves that this TJ’s guacamole is made mostly of whole ingredients and (read: no suspicious preservatives). Not to mention the fact that it’s super convenient to have on hand as a dip or spread.
“Beets contain a high concentration of nitrates, which can help lower blood pressure,” Shapiro shares. Top these seedy crackers with cream cheese and a sliced of smoked salmon for the ultimate omega-3 and protein-rich appetizer or afternoon snack.
Vitamin E is an essential nutrient that doubles as an antioxidant, and vitamin K plays a role in blood clotting, heart health, bone health, and more,” says Shapiro. Thanks to its impressive nutrient profile, it’s also a staple in the longevity-promoting Mediterranean diet.
Nuts are one of the healthiest snacks around—so much so, in fact, that “people who regularly eat them are less likely to have heart attacks or die from heart disease than those who rarely eat them,” Shapiro says.
According to Shapiro, these sardines are amongst the best of the best when it comes to heart-healthy Trader Joe's products, largely because they’re a super source of omega-3 fatty acids.
“Dark chocolate contains flavonoids, which are antioxidants that lower the risk of heart disease,” says Shapiro. Plus, this dessert is “a tasty way to fill up on fiber and magnesium, which can both improve digestion and mood,” Shapiro adds.