Be good to your heart as you enjoy the Lenten fish fry
March 21, 2017 12:00 AM
Moderation in all things.
As a 25-year veteran of the health care profession, working primarily with cardiac patients, I am highly tuned in to the lifestyle habits of these patients. Now that we have entered the holy season of Lent, many in our community attend the local “fish fry.” This Friday dinner tradition, during the time leading up to Easter, helps to support the church as well as providing a level of camaraderie within the congregation.
However, these social events can be hazardous to one’s heart health if mindfulness is not practiced. The health risks of consuming fried foods too frequently are well documented. One study showed that five hours following a high-fat meal, blood flow in the coronary arteries was reduced by 18 percent. In addition, the fried meal can provide a springboard for a weekend full of high-fat food consumption.
Please plan ahead. Contact the church or review the website and investigate alternatives to the fried foods. Does the church have options of baked or grilled fish? Does it provide vegetables with the meal?
Another option is to “fish fry hop.” Visit a different church each weekend to determine which locations provide heart-healthy foods. And don’t forget to enjoy the people around you as well. Your heart will thank you for the thoughtfulness you have given it during the weekends leading up to Easter.
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