Common Health QuestionsBack
Why should I change my diet after a heart attack?
Making changes to your diet can help reduce your risk of having another heart attack.
Read more about making other lifestyle changes after having a heart attack.
There's evidence to show that eating a Mediterranean-style diet can reduce your risk of having another heart attack.
To make your diet more Mediterranean you can:
- eat more fruit, salad and vegetables
- eat more wholegrains, nuts and seeds
- eat more fish
- eat less meat
- choose products made from vegetable and plant oils, such as olive oil, rather than dairy products, such as butter and cheese
You should eat at least 2 portions of fish a week, including a portion of oily fish.
Oily fish is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids, which help prevent heart disease.
Examples of oily fish include:
- fresh tuna
One portion is about 140g, which is equivalent to a small tin of oily fish or a small fillet of fresh fish.
Read more about oily fish.
Healthier ways to cook
Don't fry or roast food in fat. Instead, prepare and cook your food using healthy methods such as:
- making a casserole
- using the microwave
Buttery, cheesy or creamy sauces tend to be high in fat. Instead, try adding flavour to your sauces using spices, herbs and lemon juice.
Foods to avoid
Avoid foods that are high in:
- saturated fat (this is the current guidance, although further studies on saturated fat are needed)
Foods containing high amounts of fat, salt or sugar include:
- fried foods
- sweets and confectionery
- processed foods
- pre-packaged foods
Read more about healthy eating.
Supplements to avoid
Don't take beta-carotene supplements (beta-carotene is a type of vitamin A). Research has shown that taking these supplements may increase your risk of having another heart attack.
Making changes to your diet can help reduce the risk of having another heart attack. Other changes to your lifestyle can also help.