For years experts have said what’s good for the heart is good for the head. Now, a new statement from the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association underlines the findings that the same plaque buildup in the arteries that causes heart disease can also impact the brain.
“The heart and brain are linked by arteries that supply blood, oxygen and nutrients,” says Philip B. Gorelick, M.D., M.P.H., director of the Center for Stroke Research at the University of Illinois College of Medicine. When plaque builds up and arteries harden, they deprive the heart and brain of blood—and that can lead to a heart attack or stroke.
The good news: A few simple—and tasty—choices can help protect both your ticker and your cranium.
—Amy Paturel, M.S., M.P.H.