Hi! I'm Stelios Pantazis. I'm a doctor and I specialize in medical nutrition and metabolic disorders. Today, I'd like to talk about the ideal diet for atrial fibrillation. Atrial fibrillation is a condition characterised by arrhythmia. Namely, the heart beats don't occur in regular intervals. In the beginning, the condition is paroxysmal, namely the attacks appear and stop automatically after a while. If this situation progresses, the attacks require some kind of intervention in order to stop, and if this situation progresses even more, atrial fibrillation becomes a permanent and irreversible situation. When the situation becomes irreversible, the only solution is medication. But while it is still reversible, we can change our lifestyle, in order to make sure that it won't become permanent or at least in order to slow down its progression into a permanent form. To achieve that, we may need medication too. However, the change of lifestyle is the most significant treatment approach at this stage. It hasn't been fully understood yet why some people suffer from atrial fibrillation, but we've observed a series of risk factors, namely a series of factors that increase the risk of these arrhythmia attacks that may lead to permanent atrial fibrillation in the long run. Before talking about the ideal diet, let's see the factors that increase the risk of atrial fibrillation, because by studying them, it will be easier to understand what we should eat to reduce the risk of the occurrence and establishment of atrial fibrillation. Increased weight. Increased weight is one of the most important reversible risk factors for the occurrence of atrial fibrillation. Studies have shown that weight loss and the maintenance of normal weight significantly reduce the risk of atrial fibrillation, as well as the risk of atrial fibrillation becoming permanent. Cholesterol, diabetes and hypertension. Cholesterol, diabetes and hypertension are the three most important factors that increase the risk of problems of the myocardium. One of the problems they may cause is atrial fibrillation. Coffee, smoking and alcohol. Coffee, cigarette smoke and alcohol contain substances that stimulate the myocardium, namely substances that make the heart beat faster, and studies have shown that long exposure to these factors increases the risk of atrial fibrillation. Sleep apnoea. Sleep apnoea is a sneaky disease that destroys sleep and causes a series of serious health problems, one of which is atrial fibrillation. Family history. If a first-degree relative, namely a parent or sibling, suffer from it, the risk that you'll suffer from it too is higher. As it is obvious, from the actors we presented, some factors are reversible, while some others are irreversible. Today, we're talking about those the concern the diet, which are reversible, of course. We're starting from the foods that you should increase in your diet or introduce to your diet, if you haven't done so already. First, olive oil. Many studies have repeatedly shown that olive oil has miraculous abilities concerning heart rhythm. If you're looking for a food that miraculously fixes the heart rhythm, many studies have shown that this is olive oil. Second, fruit and vegetables. Fruit and vegetables are the best way to reduce cholesterol, blood pressure and the risk of diabetes. As these factors are very important for the risk of atrial fibrillation, by making sure your diet is rich in fruit and vegetables, you'll significantly reduce the risk of atrial fibrillation. Third, legumes and grains. I never get tired of saying how important legumes and unprocessed grains are for health. I'm particularly concerned by the fact that modern diets are pushing us away from the traditional Mediterranean diet, which is rich in legumes and unprocessed grains. Many people trying to lose weight increase the intake of animal protein and at the same time reduce legumes and unprocessed grains, thinking that they make them fat. This is really bad for their health, particularly for their heart's health. The traditional Mediterranean diet is based on legumes and unprocessed grains, which should be both abundant in our diet. Now that I've presented the foods that protect us from atrial fibrillation, I'd like to present the foods that significantly increase the risk of atrial fibrillation, so that you know which foods you should avoid as much as possible or even quit. First, coffee and alcohol. As I said earlier, coffee and alcohol contain substances that stimulate the myocardium, namely they make the heart beat faster. This increases the risk of atrial fibrillation. People concerned by the risk of atrial fibrillation or suffering from paroxysmal atrial fibrillation who want to reduce the risk of the situation becoming permanent should definitely quit coffee and alcohol. Second, red meat. By "red meat", we usually mean meat of mammals, namely pork, beef, lamb, kid. Studies have shown that the consumption of these foods, possibly because they're rich in saturated fats, which have been proven to be bad for the heart's health and the regulation of cholesterol in the blood, are considered harmful for the risk of the occurrence and establishment of atrial fibrillation. You should eat as less red meat as you can and, if it's possible, you should quit it. Third, sugar and salt. There are many scientific data that show that foods containing sugar and salt increase the risk of an atrial fibrillation attacks, and frequent atrial fibrillation attacks increase the risk of the establishment of atrial fibrillation. Fourth, processed foods. Processed foods, both animal and plant-based, seem to significantly increase the occurrence of atrial fibrillation. This may be attributed to the fact that they contain much salt, sugar and trans-fatty acids, namely the fatty acids that are more harmful to our health. Finally, let me remind you that besides a healthy diet, weight plays an important role in the risk of atrial fibrillation and the risk that this atrial fibrillation will be established and become permanent. If you've noticed that you have attacks of tachycardia or arrhythmia, you should work with a cardiologist, in order to find the cause. If they're caused by atrial fibrillation, you should follow a healthy diet and, if you're overweight, you should take measures to make it normal. If you thought this was interesting, please give us a thumbs up. Share it with people who you think might find it interesting and subscribe to our channel in order to get notified when we upload a video. 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