Diet For Your Heart

The Following tips will help you prepare a diet low in sodium, saturated fatty acid, and cholesterol. Therapeutic use of these guide lines will reduce your risk of heart attacks and improve resistance to arterioclerosis.

Low Sodium Diet
500-Milligram Sodium Diet (with adaption for 250 and 1000 mg.)
Iinclude in each day's diet

Milk, skim or soy

Milk, low-sodium 2 cups

Soups, unsalted 1 cup

Bread, unsalted 1 serving

Cereal, unsalted 3 slices
Fruit and Juices

Citrus 1 serving

Other fruits 1 serving
Vegetables and Entrees

Potato or substitute 3 servings

Other (one should be green, leafy, or yellow) 1 serving

Legumes - beans, peas 2 servings

Meat Alternates (see List) 1 serving

Desserts (see List) 2 servings

Sweets (jelly, honey) 1 serving as desired

Margarine, unsalted 4-5 servings

Helpful Suggestions:

  1. Do not use salt, baking powder, baking soda, MSG (monosodium glutamate) or anything with added sodium in cooking or seasoning food.
  2. Use distilled water for drinking and cooking.
  3. Read all labels and avoid foods that contain salt or sodium (Na) preservatives.
  4. Do not use foods that have been cured, smoked, pickled, corned, or processed in any way with salt or sodium.
  5. Since salt is restricted, it is important to plan flavor combinations from the seasonings suggested to enhance the flavor of foods used. See Lemon, Butter, Sweet-Sour Sauce, Unsalted Mayonnaise, and Hot Low-Sodium Salad Dressing.

Menu Pattern

Here are some simple meals for a starter.


Fresh fruit or juice or both
Unsalted whole-grain cereal with milk
Peanut butter or nuts
Unsalted toast with unsalted margarine
Low-sodium milk
Honey or jelly


Orange Juice
Unsalted oatmeal with milk
Scrambled tofu
Unsalted toast with unsalted margarine
Fresh fruit or applesauce
Jelly, jam, or honey

Luncheon or Supper

Unsalted tomato soup, if desired
Unsalted meat alternate (see list)
Unsalted vegetable
Fruit as salad or dessert
Unsalted bread
Unsalted margarine

Luncheon or Supper

Unsalted vegetable soup
Unsalted cottage cheese
Unsalted broccoli with soy cheese
Tossed fresh salad
Unsalted bread
Unsalted margarine
Skim milk


Unsalted meat alternate (see list)
Unsalted potato or substitute
Unsalted vegetable
Vegetable salad (unsalted)
Fruit or allowed dessert
Unsalted bread
Unsalted margarine
Skim or soy milk


Unsalted soy beans
Baked potato with unsalted margarine
Sliced tomatoes with unsalted soy mayonnaise
Banana orange fruit cup
Unsalted cookies
Unsalted bread
Unsalted margarine
Skim or soy milk

For a 250-mg. sodium diet, you may substitute dialyzed or low-sodium milk for skim milk at dinner and supper. For a 1000-mg. sodium diet, try to substitute skim or soymilk for lowsodium milk at breakfast, tap water for distilled water. Use beets, celery, chard, and other “greens” as desired.

Try this tasty Low-Sodium Salad Dressing

Canned tomato, tomato juice, or puree (no sodium added) flavored with lemon, sugar, onion, garlic, and herbs as desired.

You may use following seasonings:

Almond extract
Anise seed
Bakon yeast
Basil, sweet
Bay leaf
Caraway seed
Cumin seed
Fennel seed
Lemon juice
Lemon extract
Maple extract
Parsley, fresh only
Peppermint extract
Sesame seed

Herb butter for vegetables, etc.
Basic Mix for Lemon Butter:

Water, boiling 1 1/2 teaspoons
Margarine, unsalted 2 tablespoons
Lemon juice 1 tablespoon
To the Basic Mix add
1 teaspoon to 1-tablespoon herbs, such as minced parsley,
scraped onion, minced garlic, paprika.

Sweet-Sour Souce for Vegetables

Lemonjuice and sugar seasoned with grated onion, and herbs as desired.

You May Also Use:

  • Beverages and Soups - Cereal beverages (Pero, Postum, Roma, etc.) with distilled water. Hot carob beverage made with skim or soymilk allowed. Unsalted broth or soup made from low-sodium milk and allowed vegetable.
  • Breads and Cereals - Breads made without salt, baking powder, baking soda, eggs, or preservatives containing sodium. Unsalted bread, unsalted Pita bread.
  • Fruits and Juices - Use any fresh, canned, or frozen fruit or juices except limited amounts of raisins and dried figs. Include one citrus fruit or other food high in vitamin C daily.
  • Vegetables - White or sweet potato, macaroni, noodles, rice, spaghetti, all prepared without salt. Fresh, canned, or frozen without salt asparagus, eggplant, string beans, peas, pumpkin, squash, lettuce, tomatoes, kale, mustard greens. The strong-flavored vegetables - broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, cucumber, onions, radishes, turnips - should be limited if they cause distention.
    Use Only once a week: beets, beet greens, celery, Swiss chard, spinach, carrots.
    Use one green or yellow vegetable daily.
  • Meat Alternates - Unsalted cottage cheese, soybeans, tofu (soy cheese), dried legumes (beans, garbanzos and lentils); unsalted nut butters; unsalted prepared meat alternates (vegetable protein products).
  • Desserts - Vegetable gelatin desserts made with canned or frozen fruits allowed; ice dream (homemade), using fruit whiz.
  • Fats - Unsalted salad dressing without eggs; vegetable oils, soy cream.
  • Miscellaneous - Seasonings (except those listed under You may not use), unsalted nuts, unsalted popcorn.

You should not use the following:

  • Beverages and Soups - Buttermilk, regular milk in excess of 2 cups Instant cocoa mixes, “Dutch process” cocoa. Salted tomato juice, coffee, tea. Water which has been run through water softening equipment.
  • Breads and Cereals - Commercial bread, biscuits, pancake or waffle mixes. Salted bread, selfrising flours; pretzels; white and graham crackers. Quick-cooking cereals containing salt. Roman meal, oven cooked wheat, dry prepared cereals except allowed unsalted ones.
  • Fruits - Those containing sodium benzoate as a preservative as Maraschino cherries. Raw apples and melons should be avoided only if they cause discomfort.
  • Vegetables - Vegetables prepared with salt. Frozen corn, frozen lima beans, frozen peas and mixtures of these vegetables. Sauerkraut, white turnips.

Limit these to once a week since they are higher in natural sodium: beets, beet greens, carrots, celery, spinach, Swiss chard.

  • Desserts - Any prepared with salt, baking powder, baking soda, eggs, regular milk; commercial gelatin dessert; commercial ice cream; rennet desserts.
  • Fats - Salted butter, salted margarine, salad dressings made with salt and egg white.
  • Miscellaneous - Catsup, chili sauce, salted gravy, salted nuts, salted popcorn, salt, seasonings such as celery salt and celery seeds, garlic salts, onion salt, monosodium glutamate (Accent), Bakon yeast, meat tenderizers, chemically softened water.

Strict diet for lowering cholesterol and blood fats

This diet is formulated to be cholesterol free, very low in fat, and high in complex carbohydrates, with no refined sugar. Foods should be chosen from unrefined sources, eating the food in as natural a state as practical. Animal products are omitted, except for a limited use of skim milk and egg whites.

This diet meets the daily requirements for vitamins, minerals, protein, and fat. Calories are restricted to aid in weight reduction (special 1200, 1500, and 1800 calorie plans are included). If sodium restriction is also desired, this diet will meet your requirement by simply following the procedure of not adding any salt, and not buying foods with salt added in processing (be sure to read labels).

This diet provides the following approximate composition:

  • Fat - 10-12% of the calories, all from vegetable fat sources.
  • Protein - 15-18% of calories (55 to 68 gins. of protein).
  • Carbohydrate - 73% of calories, composed primarily of complex carbohydrates in as unrefined a state as practical.


Foods are listed under two main categories: Foods Permitted, and Foods Omitted. The various types of foods are then broken down into six basic food groups, vegetables, fruits, grains, milk, fats, and protein rich foods. Specific foods are listed with serving sizes.

Follow the recommended number of servings per food group as specified for the 1200, 1500, or 1800 calorie diet listed below. Suggested daily menus and some recipes are provided below to assist you in meal planning.

Foods Permitted

Vegetable Group - One serving provides approximately 2 gms. of protein, 8 gms. of complex carbohydrates, a trace of polyunsaturated fats, and 40 calories.

Asparagus, 7-8 spears
Beans, Green snap, 1 cup
Bean Sprouts, 1 1/2 cups
Beets, 2 beets, 2” dia.
Broccoli, 1 1/2 stalks, or 1 cup
Brussels sprouts, 7-8 medium
Cabbage 1 1/2 cups raw shredded, 1 cup cooked
Carrots, 1 large, 2 small raw, 3/4 cup cooked
Cauliflower, 1 cup, raw or cooked
Celery, no restriction
Chard, 1 cup, cooked
Collards, 1/2 cooked
Cucumbers, no restriction
Egg plant, 3 slices
Kale, 3/4 cup cooked
Lettuce and other salad greens, no restriction
Mushrooms, 12-14 small, 6 large
Mustard green, 3/4 cup cooked
Onions, 1 small
Onions, green, 4 small, including tops
Parsnips, 1/2 of a small parsnip, 1/3-cup cooked
Peas, 1/2 cup
Peppers, green, no restriction
Potatoes, 1/2 of a small potato, 2/5 cooked
Pumpkin, 1/2 cup cooked
Radishes, no restriction
Rutabagas, 3 oz. raw, 1/2 cup cooked
Spinach, 1 cup cooked
Squash, summer 1 cup cooked
Squash, winter 2/5 cup cooked
Sweet potatoes 1/3 small
Tomatoes, 1 medium
Tomato juice, 1 cup
Turnip greens, 1 cup cooked
Vegetable juice cocktail, 1 cup
Yams, 1/4 cup cooked

Fruit Group - One serving of fruit provides approximately 20 grams of carbohydrates, a trace of protein and fats, and 80 calories. Fruit should be fresh or preserved without added sugar.

Apple, 1 medium
Apricots, 4-5 medium
Banana, 1 small
Blackberries, 1 cup raw
Blueberries, 1 cup raw
Boysenberries, 1 cup raw
Cantaloupe, 1/2 medium melon
Cherries, sweet - raw, 18 large
Dates, 3 medium
Figs, fresh, 2 large
Grapefruit, one medium
Grapes, fresh, 3/4 cup
Guavas, 1 medium
Lemons, 2 medium
Mangoes, 1/2 medium
Nectarines, 2 medium
Orange, 1 medium
Papaya, 2/3 medium
Peaches, 2 medium, 1 cup sliced raw
Pear, 1 small
Persimmon, 1 medium
Pineapple, raw, 1 cup
Plums, 2 medium
Prunes, 3 medium
Pomegranate, 1 large
Raisin, 2 1/2 t.
Raspberries, fresh, 1 cup
Strawberries, fresh, 1 1/3 cups
Tangerine, 2 large
Watermelon, 1 slice, 6 inch diameter, 3/4” thick

Cereak-Grain Group - One serving of cereal-grains provides approximately 3 grams of protein, 18 grams of complex carbohydrates, and 100 calories.

Bread, whole grain, 1 1/2 slices
Roll, 1 average
Tortilla, corn, 1 1/1 6” diameter
Pancake (made with egg white and whole grains), 1
Rice, brown, 3/4 cup cooked
Sweet corn, 1 medium ear
Corn, canned, 3/4 cup
Cornmeal, whole grain, 1/4 cup
Oatmeal, dry, 1/4 cup
Oatmeal, cooked, 2/3 cup
Wheat, cracked, 2/3 cup cooked
Wheat flour, whole grain, 1/4 cup
Rye flour, 1/3 cup
Breakfast cereals, prepared
All Bran, 1/2 cup
Bran Flakes, 40% 3/4 cup
Grape nuts, 1/4 cup
Shredded wheat, 1 1/4 biscuits
Wheat chex, 1/2 cup
Rye crisp 4-5 small wafers.

Milk Group - One serving of milk provides 9 grams of protein, 12 grams of carbohydrate, and 90 calories.

Skim (non-fat) milk, 1 cup
Butter milk, 1 cup
Soy milk, 2/3 cup

Fat Group - One serving of at provides 5 gms. of fat and 45 calories.

Vegetable oil, 1 teaspoon
Margarine, soft tub, 1 1/2 teaspoons
Peanut butter, 1 1/2 teaspoons

Protein Group - One serving of protein rich foods provides approximately 15 gins. of protein, 40 grams of complex carbohydrates, 2.5 gms. of fats (polyunsaturated), and 240 calories.

Brown beans, 1 cup
Chickpeas (garbanzos), 1 cup
Cuban black beans, 1 cup
Kidney beans, 1 cup
Lentils, 1 cup
Lima beans, 1 cup
Pinto beans, 1 cup
Soy beans, 4/5 cup (higher fat content, 9 gins.)
Split peas, soup (made with skim milk), 1 1/2 cups
White navy beans, 1 cup

Entrees (Legume, Grain, Vegetable combinations)

Bean-oat patties, 2 patties
Bulgur Chick patties, 2 patties
Chili beans, (made with TVP), 1 cup
Garbanzo roast, 4/5 cup
Garbanzo-rice patties, 2 patties
Lentil roast, 4/5 cup
Lentil-millet roast, 4/5 cup
Savory patties, 2 patties
Soy-oat patties, 2 patties
Soybean casserole, 4/5 cup
Vegeburgers, (made with TVP and/or egg whites), 2

Meat Alternates

Cottage cheese, 1/2 cup Egg white, one (5.5-gm. protein, but only 16 cal.)
Use egg whites in food preparation, count as part of the entree instead of separately.
TVP (textured vegetable protein), dry, 2 oz.

Foods Omitted

If on a sodium restriction, omit pickles, sauerkraut, and processed foods with salt added.

Canned and frozen fruits that have added sugar: Refined cereal products, such as: White flour, white bread, noodles, macaroni, white rice, pastry, cookies, cake, crackers.

Omit whole milk, ice cream, and non-dairy creamer substitutes.

All solid fats, and animal fats, especially lard. Meat, fish, poultry, cheese, shellfish, and foods containing these animal products. Read the labels carefully!