Eating and drinking and Heart failure

Too much salt is bad for your heart. It can lead to a build-up of fluid and make you thirstier, so avoid salty processed food and snacks. Try using herbs instead of salt to add flavour to your cooking and avoid low-salt alternatives like LoSalt – these are high in potassium. Aim to have no more than 2g of salt a day.

Drinking no more than 2 to 2.5l (3.5 to 4.5 pints) will help to prevent a build-up of fluid and could lower the dose of water tablets you need. Tea, coffee, water, juice, alcohol, soup, gravy and sauces all count towards the amount of fluid you have in a day.

Remember that alcohol can make your condition worse. If your heart failure is linked to alcohol, you should stop drinking completely. Talk to your doctor or another medical professional about getting alcohol support.

If you notice your ankles, legs or abdomen swelling and that you’re more breathless, cut down your fluids to 1.5 to 2l (2.5 to 3.5 pints) a day.

If the weather’s warm, allow yourself an extra half a litre (1 pint) a day.

Relevant Topics

Heart Failure

What is Heart Failure?

Treatment for Heart Failure

Getting Support for Heart Failure

Eating and Drinking and Heart Failure

Heart Failure Services

Shropshire Services & Support Groups - Heart Failure

National Services - Heart Failure


Self Care and Support

Self Care and Support - Introduction

Self Care and Support - Aims

Shropshire Services & Support Groups - Self Care and Support

National Services - Self Care and Support


Wellbeing Plan (Care Plan)

Wellbeing Plan (Care Plan) - Information

Wellbeing Plan (Care Plan) - Document Sections