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Tops Foods to Avoid with AFib

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Learn more about foods to avoid with AFib in this article. We all know that what we eat has an impact on our overall health — but for those who are living with atrial fibrillation, paying attention to what they eat is even more important.

Capable of triggering an AFib attack or worsening symptoms of the disease, certain foods belong on a “do not eat” list for atrial fibrillation patients. While this may seem a little extreme, eating a balanced and nutritious diet that avoids AFib trigger foods is essential for great disease management and improved overall health.

Foods to Avoid With AFib

While everyone is different with what they can tolerate, there is a list of foods that are generally considered to be ill-advised for patients with atrial fibrillation to eat. Especially in large quantities, these foods can actually be quite dangerous for anyone living with this disease. Working with your cardiology care team, it is advised that every patient with atrial fibrillation develop their very own AFib diet plan.

Some of the foods that should be avoided by patients with atrial fibrillation include:

Excess Sodium

Salt, an incredibly common ingredient in highly processed foods like lunch deli meat and potato chips, are associated with an increased risk for developing atrial fibrillation episodes. Eating a lot of sodium is dangerous for AFib patients because it elevates blood pressure levels. Having chronically high blood pressure levels (from chronic health issues or from eating large amounts of sodium) is linked to a significantly increased risk of developing AFib episodes.

Some common processed foods that are high in sodium include:

  • Processed deli meats

  • Salted nuts

  • Jerky and cured meats

  • Canned or preserved foods

  • Frozen pizzas and TV dinners

Excess Caffeine

If you love your morning cup of coffee or strong tea, this may be hard to hear. Capable of elevating your blood pressure and heart rate, caffeine is a stimulant that can cause significant issues for people living with atrial fibrillation. In general, it is advised that people with AFib should cut down or remove excess caffeine from their diet to reduce their risk of triggering an episode. Although some studies have shown a small amount of coffee is ok, it is certainly a trigger for some people.

Drinks that contain high levels of caffeine include:

  • Coffee

  • Black and green tea

  • Energy drinks

  • Dark soda

Added Sugar

Sugar, which is now added into just about every modern processed food, has a very negative impact on our overall health. When eaten in excess, sugar leads to weight gain and an increased risk of developing diabetes, which in turn can increase blood pressure levels over time. While cutting out all refined sugars completely is no easy task, avoiding foods that are high in sugar is a great way to reduce the risk of developing severe AFib symptoms.

Foods to try to avoid include:

  • Desserts like cake, pie, and other baked goods

  • Soda and sweet coffees

  • Pasta

  • Candy and chocolate

  • Highly processed foods


Commonly consumed as a way to relax and unwind after a long day of work, consistent consumption of alcohol is damaging to your health in a multitude of ways. Alcohol has been shown to be such a strong trigger for AFib that it has its own name, called Holiday Heart Syndrome. This condition is associated with the holiday season, referring to the significant rise in AFib episodes that usually fall around a holiday associated with significant alcohol drinking.

Capable of causing sleep disturbances and impairing judgment, patients with AFib are encouraged to cut back or completely eliminate their intake of alcohol to prevent worsening symptoms. Also known to interact with AFib medications, alcohol is dangerous to consume in large quantities for someone with atrial fibrillation.

Common alcoholic beverages that should be avoided include:

  • Beer

  • Wine

  • Cocktails

  • Vodka sodas

Excess or Artificial Trans Fats

One of the primary building blocks of all foods, fat can have a negative impact on your health when eaten in large quantities. Known for being very calorically dense, eating large amounts of fat in the form of butter or fried foods can lead to obesity, elevated blood pressure, and coronary artery disease. Because of this, many cardiologists suggest that their patients with atrial fibrillation monitor their intake of fat-heavy foods.

Examples of foods high in fat include:

  • Fried foods

  • Butter and margarine

  • Oils

  • Cheeses

  • Potato chips


Gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye, and barley. As a common additive in modern foods, it is found most commonly in bread, pasta, condiments, and many packaged foods.

For people who may be gluten-intolerant or have a wheat allergy, your body might respond to gluten consumption by causing inflammation in your body. This inflammation can then make you more susceptible to AFib symptoms, worsening the severity of your symptoms.

Some ways to reduce your gluten intake include:

  • Cutting bread, pasta, and baked foods from your diet

  • Reading the label on processed foods to check for added gluten

  • Trying gluten-free foods alternatives


Tyramine is an amino acid commonly found in a variety of different foods. For some, tyramine can trigger an AFib episode because it is known to elevate our blood pressure levels. There have been a few case reports written showing a link between tyramine and triggering AFib, and that eliminating tyramine-containing foods could improve atrial fibrillation.

Examples of tyramine heavy foods include:

  • Aged cheeses such as cheddar, parmesan, and gorgonzola

  • Pepperoni and salami

  • Sauerkraut and kimchi

  • Soybeans and snow peas

How To Reverse Atrial Fibrillation Naturally

If you are interested in natural treatment options for atrial fibrillation and are highly motivated in improving your symptoms naturally, to reduce your need for medications or even procedures, then take a look at my one-of-a-kind, online educational program, Take Control Over AFib.

Lifestyle modifications and reducing inflammation are essential components of the long-term management of atrial fibrillation. Addressing the source cause of atrial fibrillation can lead to a significant benefit for most AFib patients. Targeted lifestyle modifications can reduce your symptoms, reduce your reliance on medications or procedures, and even improve the long-term success rate of a catheter ablation procedure for AFib. However, most patients are not given instructions or tips on how to accomplish these essential lifestyle modifications in an AFib targeted style.

This is exactly why I created the Take Control Over AFib Program, to give people a step-by-step plan to improve and potentially reverse atrial fibrillation naturally.

Thinking about lifestyle modifications is easy, but putting in place a system to keep you committed to achieve real results takes time and dedication, and with my step-by-step plan, we can achieve powerful and long-lasting results together.

Learn More About The Take Control Over AFib Program Here

Natural treatments for AFib 2
Learn More About The Take Control over AFib Program Here.

Putting It Altogether

At the end of the day, we all know that our diet has a massive impact on our overall health. Just like people with other chronic diseases, patients living with atrial fibrillation need to use extra caution when it comes to planning out their daily meals. Avoiding common AFib trigger foods is a great way to reduce the risk of having frequent AFib episodes and will help you make you feel healthy and well.

To get started with an AFib safe diet, I recommend consulting with your primary care provider and cardiology team. They will be able to offer suggestions and support as you adapt your personalized AFib diet plan into your day-to-day routine.

Can AFib be reversed with Diet? Find out more in this video.
Find out more about the Take Control Over AFIb Program Here.



See All My Top Recommended AFib Products on Amazon in One Place. Click Here.

Atrial Fibrillation from A to Z. Everything you need to know about AFib in a single video.

Can AFib be Reversed with Diet? Find Out More in this Video.

Learn more about the Take Control Over AFib Program here. 

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