After my husband had a heart attack followed by a 5x bypass open heart surgery, his surgeon strongly urged him to start eating a plant-based diet of whole foods (no processed “healthy” stuff), no added fat (even “healthy” ones), and low sodium. The resources below will give you all the medical and scientific “whys”.
According to William C. Roberts, the editor in chief of the American Journal of Cardiology, the only critical risk factor for atherosclerotic plaque buildup [which leads to heart disease and heart attacks] is cholesterol, specifically elevated LDL cholesterol in your blood. The level of cholesterol in the blood is closely correlated with the amount of atherosclerosis in your arteries.
To drastically reduce LDL cholesterol levels, you need to drastically reduce your intake of three things: trans fat, which comes from processed foods and naturally from meat and dairy; saturated fat, found mainly in animal products and junk foods; and to a lesser extent dietary cholesterol, found exclusively in animal-derived foods, especially eggs.*
How Not To Die, by Michael Greger, MD*
Forks Over Knives: The Plant-Based Way To Health
The Starch Solution, by John McDougal, MD
Plant-Strong, by Rip Esselstyn
The Engine Seven-Day Rescue Diet, by Rip Esselstyn
Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease, by Caldwell Esselstyn, MD