Arteries are the tubes, which carry oxygenated blood from the heart to all organs in your body. Thin layer of cells (endothelium), which line inside these vessels, provide free blood flow to cells and tissue.

Everything goes well, as long as blood vessels stay clear and open.

Unfortunately it's not uncommon that arteries' lumen becomes blocked by plaques. These substances, made up of cholesterol, calcium, macrophages and other blood cells, stick to the walls inside the vessels. With time, these plaques become large enough to impair blood flow to certain body areas.

Credit: Freepik

Credit: Freepik

If this occurs in the coronary arteries, which normally carry blood to the heart muscle, a person may experience heart attack.

Sometimes plaques can break open. After that, blood cells, called platelets, accumulate in the affected region, creating blood clots.

It's completely possible for clots to tear off the vessel's wall, causing serious problems like stroke.

Numerous studies found that our food preference plays a great role in developing fatty plaques (medically called atherosclerosis).

Credit: Freepik

Credit: Freepik

It doesn't mean that you should eliminate all fats from your menu. In fact, your body needs health-friendly monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, contained in nuts, olive oil, seeds, salmon and mackerel, to function properly.

But you really need to limit or stay off these foods that can clog your arteries:

#1. Bacon, sausages, salami and other processed meats – all of these products are full of salt, preservatives and saturated fats, which are well-known atherosclerosis culprits.

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#2. Regular cheese – whole milk and conventional dairy products, including cheese, contain high amount of saturated fatty acids, which can trigger excessive production of cholesterol in your liver.

Credit: Freepik

Credit: Freepik

#3. Vegetable oil – all hydrogenated oils, such as canola, corn, vegetable and safflower oils, contain high levels of trans fats. This group can really boost “bad” cholesterol levels in your blood and cause plaques formation.

#4. Refined carbs – it seems that breakfast cereals are the most healthy food in the world. The truth is that processing removes almost all healthy components from them and destroys their natural structure. In addition to this, low-fiber breakfast cereals usually contain fructose, which increases fat creation in the liver. Experts say that white bread, white rice and other sources of refined or processed carbs can lead to blood sugar spikes that damages endothelium and raises risks of atherosclerosis.

Credit: Freepik

Credit: Freepik

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#5. Red meat – try to limit consumption of pork, fatty beef and lamb, as these meats are rich in saturated fats that can result in blocked arteries.

#6. Packaged cookies and cakes – it's really tasty, we know. But be aware that all these waffles, cookies and doughnuts consist of trans fats. The next time, you'll crave packaged cake, just imagine, how this sweet thing builds fatty nodes inside your vessels.

Credit: Freepik

Credit: Freepik

#7. Margarine – several years ago margarine was presented as a healthy alternative to butter. The reason was that margarine contains vegetable oils instead of animal-based products. In fact, many margarines (particularly sticks) are full of hydrogenated oil that helps keep them in solid form.

#8. French fries – all dietitians say in unison that french fries is the worst food, you can take. Doctors agree with them, as this product brings a lot of trans fats to your body, clogging the vessels and leading to harmful consequences.

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The BetterMe Team wants you and those close to you to live a healthy, happy life! Your health is a valuable thing; look after your body and your mind so that you can live your life to the fullest – Remember you only get one!

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