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30 October 2012
A single junk food meal, with a high level of saturated fat, could cause damage to the arteries.
In research presented at the Canadian Cardiovascular Congress, scientists studied 28 non-smoking men who ate a healthy 'Mediterranean diet' type meal one week and a junk food meal the next.
Researchers found that after eating the junk food meal, the men's arteries dilated 24 per cent less than normal. In contrast, the arteries were found to dilate as usual and maintain good blood flow after the Mediterranean meal.
Our Senior Cardiac Nurse, Natasha Stewart, said:“This research adds to the growing body of evidence that we would all be better off if we dumped the junk. A 'Mediterranean diet', which is low in saturated fats and rich in good fats, is much better for your heart than a trip to the takeaway.
“However, this was an incredibly small study over a very short period of time, so we would need to see further research to help us understand more specifically about the impact of junk food on our arteries.
“Making simple changes to your diet, such as trying to eat two portions of oily fish a week and at least five portions of fruit and vegetables a day, and choosing healthier fats such as olive and rapeseed oil as well as nuts and seeds, can all help to keep your heart healthy.”
If you're in need of some inspiration in the kitchen, you might be interested in our range of heart healthy cookbooks.