Spread the love this February with a Healthy Heart
Posted: February 15, 2013
UnityPoint Health - Des Moines
The month of February is upon us, and for many, it means one thing. Valentine's Day! However, did you know the entire month February is actually dedicated to matters of the heart?
February is American Heart Month; a month to spread awareness about the importance of heart health. Heart disease and stroke are an epidemic in the United States today, but the good news is that many of the major risk factors of heart disease can be prevented and controlled.
Here are some fun ways you can promote heart health to those you care about the most:
February is dedicated to matters of the heart, but don't let it end with the flip of your calendar. Try thinking of more fun ways you can promote heart health awareness all year long. Your heart and health will thank you!
- Go RED on February 1st! Each year, on the first Friday in February, millions of women and men come together to wear red, take action and commit to fighting heart disease. National Wear Red Day and the Go Red for Women campaign promote educational programs, increase understanding about the risks for heart disease, and support research to discover scientific knowledge about heart health.
- Schedule a Fitness Date! Over time, the traditional "dinner and a movie" routine can put a damper on a healthy lifestyle. Instead of making plans that revolve around calorie-packed foods, too many cocktails, or periods of inactivity, try thinking of fun ways you can exercise together-go for a walk or run, head to the golf course, hit the gym, or connect through yoga!
- Indulge in Heart-Friendly Treats! Resist the candy hearts and satisfy your sweet tooth with something your real heart will appreciate. Fruits like apples, bananas, berries, cantaloupe, oranges, kiwi, grapefruit and papaya are loaded with nutrients that can lower cholesterol and blood pressure and help you lose weight. To get the most out of every piece of fruit you eat, choose fresh, whole fruit first before canned, frozen, or fruit juice. Eat three servings each day, and to control blood sugars or triglycerides, eat whole fruits instead of drinking fruit juice.
- Relax and Recharge! Chronic stress on your mind, body, and heart can increase your risk of high blood pressure and high cholesterol. The more you can do to find healthy ways of managing stress, the better your life (and heart) will be. Gardening, reading, taking a weekend getaway, even setting aside 10 minutes of quiet time each day are examples of how you can unwind from the stresses of life, and recharge your well-being!