I'm a 19 year old female just starting recovery from anorexia. Because of long distance running, perscribed Adderall, and inadequate intake for a long long time, my resting heartrate has dropped to around 20-30, blood pressure is a little moody, occasional flutters, etc... (Don't yell ;w; I am checking in with my doctor regularly.)
I was wondering if you have suggestions for recipes, or specific foods I could eat that have a lot of nutrients that help the heart? I know organ meats offer the best nutrition- is it dumb to assume eating heart would be the best bet?
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I didn't even know it was possible for you to be living/walking/functioning with a heart rate so low. i've heard of olympic athletes in the forties/fifties but not lower than that. wouldn't it be very high since you have been sick- your heart would have to work much harder and is not efficient. when I was really ill (84 lbs) my RHR was consistently around 115 bpm.
I don't think you need certain foods- you just need ANY foods. eat lots of fatty meats, avocados, coconut oil, eggs/dairy if you can, fruits, veggies, nuts/seeds. your body is craving nutrients so it really doesn't matter if you eat a little organ meat or not. if you like it, then eat some, but don't just think organ meats will help your heart. any nourishment will.
I would recommend a nutrient-rich diet (of course) with perhaps a little extra emphasis on getting lots of vitamin k2 to help ensure that calcium is moved to where it belongs, in your bones, not your arteries. Sources include natto, cheese, meat.
-- from a previous comment Your idea of organ meat is not especially healthy, especially liver which may contain high levels of toxins.
I would respectfully disagree in practical terms:
Still, people worry. Just to be sure, let’s take a look at studies on toxin accumulation in the livers of free-living livestock, as opposed to livestock living in contrived conditions. One study, which looked at cadmium, lead, and mercury levels in the organs and meat of healthy horses, cattle, and pigs, found that heavy metal accumulation was generally higher in the liver but not enough to affect human health. Another examined lead and mercury residues in livers and kidneys of Canadian chickens, cows, and pigs; all levels were below the official Canadian tolerance of 2 ppm for lead and 0.5 ppm for mercury. Both studies are from the mid-70s, but more recent studies looking at mercury accumulation in cattle have had similar results. Livestock, even CAFO livestock, just aren’t exposed to toxic levels of heavy metals.
Liver can accumulate toxins and heavy metals, but so can every other part of the animal. If you avoid liver because of toxins, you should probably avoid the rest of the animal, too.
He goes on to note that you shouldn't overdo liver consumption, however, just because we didn't evolve with access to a half-pound per day of the stuff. It was a part of the whole animal, only a part. Makes sense.
I think just a normal paleo diet with plenty of healthy fats will do you a world of good! Good luck, and I wish you strength in your journey!
I think your most important goal is to gain muscle mass overall, some of which will be heart muscle. Focus on gaining weight with a healthy relatively high protein diet and you should be fine. I don't believe there are specific types of food that are good for heart muscle. Your idea of organ meat is not especially healthy, especially liver which may contain high levels of toxins. Good luck. In my blog I have several posts by an registered nutritionist on healty eating tips.
I don't have the answer to your question, but as you restore weight, some of that will be lean tissue (muscle), and some of that will be heart muscle. So your heart should get stronger simply by your body getting healthier. Lots of protein is obviously key in building muscle.
And just wanted to say I've been there and wish you the best in your recovery.