Heart Attacks in Canada Prompt Realistic Lifestyle Changes

(NC)—It could be your son, daughter, a sibling, a parent or grandparent, or even you – many find it difficult to leave their unhealthy ways of living behind even when they know what’s right or better for their bodies. All too often it takes a tragic event such as a heart attack to sound the wake up call, and whether it’s minor or not, a heart attack can often be prevented if the proper steps are taken.

High cholesterol and heart disease are both conditions that are very prevalent amongst Canadians and are leading causes of heart disease. We need to not only focus on how to change our attitudes and behaviours once illness strikes, but to focus on prevention in the first place.

“Recovering from a heart attack and reversing what may seem like a lifetime of bad habits and dietary misinformation can seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be,” said Amanda Schwartz, registered dietitian. “There are a number of simple steps one can take that don’t disrupt your lifestyle. Besides the obvious, such as being more active and eating right on a regular basis, it’s great to keep appetizing, heart healthy options up your sleeve to help take a new regime seriously.”

Eating “heart healthy food” does not have to be bland and boring, it’s about looking for foods that are high in plant sterols which have been shown to help reduce LDL cholesterol levels in the body. Now that the addition of plant sterols to certain foods has been approved in Canada, muffins that have cholesterol-reducing effects can even be made. Cooking with or eating two servings of BioBest probiotic yogourt with plant sterols every day combined with a healthy diet and exercise, can help manage cholesterol levels while maintaining regular eating habits.

Try a delicious heart healthy recipe for yourself:
Banana Blueberry Muffins
Yield: 12 Muffins

Preparation Time: 30 – 35 Minutes


3 ripe bananas

2 eggs, large

½ cup (125 mL) Astro BioBest probiotic yogourt with plant sterols, blueberry flavour

1 cup (250 mL) granulated white sugar

1½ (375 mL) cups all purpose flour

1 tsp (5 mL) salt

1 tsp (5 mL) baking soda

½ cup (125 mL) frozen blueberries


1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease 12-cup muffin tin or line with muffin paper.

2. In large bowl, mash bananas with a spoon, fork or potato masher.

Add eggs and Astro BioBest probiotic yogourt with plant sterols and mix well.

Add sugar, flour, salt and baking soda and mix until all the flour has been incorporated.

3. Gently stir in blueberries.

4. Divide evenly between the muffin cups.

5. Bake for 15-20 minutes until muffins are lightly brown and tops spring back when gently pressed.

6. Cool for 10 minutes and remove from muffin tins.

Additional Notes

• Make banana bread by pouring batter into a greased loaf pan. Bake for 45-60 minutes until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

• Change up this recipe for more excitement! Replace the blueberries with walnuts, and switch the Astro BioBest probiotic yogourt with plant sterols, blueberry flavour for vanilla. Or, try it with frozen raspberries and Astro BioBest probiotic yogourt with plant sterols raspberry flavour.

More information on making healthy food choices can be found online at www.astro.ca.