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Episode 44: Is Your Diet Improving Or Worsening Your Cardiovascular Health?


Is Your Diet Improving Or Worsening Your Cardiovascular Health?

Our diets can have a big role to play in obesity and but what about the effect of food on cardiovascular health? Health begins with the food we eat. Our arteries are the highways on which the blood transports oxygen and nutrients to various parts of the body. Atherosclerosis is the process of fat and cholesterol deposition in our arteries which can impede this essential process. Our very special guest shares her thoughts on how diet can impact atherosclerosis. 

Dr. Purvi Parwani a practicing cardiologist and an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Department of Cardiology at Loma Linda University. Dr. Parwani completed her residency at the University of Connecticut Medical Center and her Cardiology fellowship at the University of Oklahoma. She completed a year of Preventative Cardiology fellowship at Hartford Hospital. She then went on to do an advanced cardiovascular imaging fellowship at the University of California, San Francisco. Dr. Parwani is Board-Certified in Internal Medicine, Nuclear Cardiology, Echocardiography, and Cardiovascular disease. She firmly believes that cardiovascular health starts with physical well-being and focuses on lifestyle modification, exercise, diet, and yoga for all her patients.

Key Highlights:

Tune in to this podcast episode and learn:

  • When, where, why, and how atherosclerosis happens
  • The kinds of food that trigger and worsen the building up of plaque in blood vessels
  • The possibilities of reversing atherosclerosis
  • Medicines and methods attempted to reduce the progression of atherosclerosis
  • Foods that may help impede and possibly even reverse atherosclerosis

Atherosclerosis as per Dr. Purvi Parwani:

  • Plaque is formed from the build-up of cholesterol, fat, and calcium.
  • As people grow older, plaque hardens blood vessels.
  • Atherosclerosis is a process that starts from the day we are born.
  • Blood vessels from all over the body including the heart, brain, legs, and intestines could be inflamed with plaque.

Two Major Things that Happen in Atherosclerosis:

  1. Cholesterol deposits happen.
  2. LDL (bad cholesterol) gets oxidized and goes into those foam cells that accumulate at the blood vessels.

Unprocessed Foods that Reduce Atherosclerosis:

  • Fruits & Vegetables
  • Nuts
  • Legumes
  • Beans
  • Fish

Dr. Purvi Parwani’s Final Thoughts to Listeners:

  1. Choose the right ingredients. Choose less processed foods. Choose fresh ingredients. 
  2. Practice meal preparation. 
  3. Reduce stress. Meditate or do yoga.
  4. Munch on your exercise.
  5. Balance is the key when it comes to diet.



Dr. Purvi Parwani

“Atherosclerosis is a diet disease. It’s a lifestyle disease. It’s a disease of inflammation.”

“One size does not fit all.”

“One can decide their own healthy eating patterns depending on their food preference, cultural traditions, and whatever their health needs are after discussing with their physician.”

“What we need in this pandemic world and the world after a pandemic is definitely a plant-forward diet.”


Dr. Avishkar Sabharwal

“Eating healthy—it’s not a one-day thing. You have to do it for your life.”



Stress And Obesity (Episode 8)

Dr. Purvi Parwani: Website, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn

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