Sweet News Strawberries

The road to a healthy heart runs through the kitchen. Just ask Joe Piscatella, who had coronary bypass surgery at the early age of 32. Told that he wouldn’t live to see his two young children graduate from high school, Joe decided to take a crash course in heart-healthy eating and learned a few things along the way.

Thirty years later, Joe is now the President of the Institute for Fitness and Health and best-selling author of “The Road to a Healthy Heart Runs Through the Kitchen.” Full of facts and sound advice, this book is an easy-to-follow lifestyle plan that combines the newest guidelines from the USDA with 300 easy and delicious recipes.

Joe knows the importance of eating foods that you love and explains how to include them in a heart-healthy diet. Take America’s favorite fruit: the Strawberry. Strawberries are a superfood that Joe recommends to increase levels of folate, a B vitamin important for heart health. Studies have shown a reduction in artery-damaging inflammation and lower blood pressure after eating a serving of strawberries every day for eight weeks. Luckily for your heart, fresh, sweet strawberries are available year-round from California!

According to Joe, “This book is easy to follow and will engage your head along with your stomach in the quest for a lifestyle that will really make a difference.”

Spinach, Strawberry and Walnut Salad

4 servings

4 cups of fresh baby spinach leaves

1/4 cup wine vinaigrette

1 cup thickly sliced California strawberries

1/2 cup blueberries

1/4 cup walnut halves, chopped

Toss spinach with vinaigrette. Add berries and walnuts. Toss again.

Nutrition Note: The antioxidants in strawberries and the omega-3 fatty acids in the walnuts help keep artery walls healthy.

You can include the food you love in a heart-healthy diet.