Happy Love Month February!
There’s not a store you will go into and dodge all of the pinks and reds, and hearts, and love. Although it is “love month” its also Heart Disease Awareness Month.
In honor of that, let's talk about the heart health awareness, weekly ideas you can implement into your lifestyle that support your heart’s health and food you can consume to be proactive about prevention.
Self-love is in the air.
Heart Health Awareness
It’s a fact, cardiovascular heart disease is one of three top health issues that often lead to mortality. Your heart is an essential component to your body. It is important to be aware of the condition of our heart and care for it like our life counts on it-- because it does.
While there are a few risk factors we cannot control, most of the risk factors can be controlled by our lifestyle choices. Some of the lifestyle choice risk factors can be:
- Poor eating habits
- Physical inactivity
- Unmanaged stress
- Poor hygiene
- Not controlling certain health conditions, like high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes
I know each of those risk factors are difficult to change and can be overwhelming. I have been there. Unmanaged stress can sometimes get the best of us. However, small adjustments every few weeks will make a huge improvement on your health and well-being.
You are worth the change. You are worth the effort.
Now, let’s take a look at what you can control to care for your heart.
Weekly Activities To Love and Support Your Heart
Moving throughout your entire day will help your heart pump blood smoother through your body without loads of pressure. Physical activity and exercise help strengthen your muscles (including the heart), lower your stress, reduces inflammation and contribute to lessen smoking habits. The key is finding things you like to do and doing them.
High blood pressure is related to heart disease. Stress and excessive amounts of sodium raises your blood pressure. One way to ease your body and mind are breathing techniques. It ignites your relaxation response in your body and you have access to that control.
Essential oils are tools that give you the additional support in caring for your heart and body. There are specific oils that improves your body physically, mentally and emotionally. Our bodies are so intricately connected that one system direct affects another. Aromatherapy directly and indirectly improves our overall well-being.
According to a recent study done by the International Journal of Preventive Medicine, researchers found that massage therapy is an effective intervention for reducing high blood pressure in the body. Massages lower the level of pain, tension and anxiety levels to support your heart and body.
Nutrients that support healthy heart
Fiber is good for the healthiness of our heart because our heart has to produce cholesterol. However, if too much cholesterol in our blood, it will start to build plaque in the arteries. That will increase the risk of heart disease. Soluble fiber has the ability to bind to cholesterol, then eliminating it as waste, and lower the total cholesterol levels.
High soluble fiber foods:
Whole grains like oats,
Omega-3s Healthy Fats
Omega-3s are helpful to lowering blood pressure. They are essential for people who have high blood pressure. Our bodies cannot make omega-3s so we need to consume them in our meals.
Omega 3s foods:
Flax and Chia Seeds
Unsaturated fats help lower our cholesterol levels, reducing the risk of heart disease. For oils, you only need about a tablespoon or so in your meals. You don’t want to go out of control.
Antioxidants are good to fight the oxidative damage of free radicals that causes damage in the body. In simpler terms, free radicals are toxic molecules that roam in the body that damage living cells and tissues. Foods that have a higher antioxidant capacity can make a huge difference when it comes to heart health. They help the flow of blood flow easier, reducing oxidative stress.
The darker the fruit or vegetable the high antioxidant levels.
Dark leafy veggies
**Spices that are antioxidant superstars:
Meal Idea #1: Greek Yogurt with walnuts and blueberries
Meal Idea #2: Lemon pepper Salmon, with leafy green salad and olive oil with pepper
Meal Idea #3: Old Fashion Plain oatmeal with a tablespoon of nut butter and blackberries
Meal Idea #4: Blueberry Five Bean Salad
Meal Idea #5: Greek-Style Braised Eggplant with a greek salad
What are two things that you can focus on this month to support your heart?
Write it down.
Share this post.
Execute your plan
Tell us about it by commenting below
Now only are you caring for yourself, you are sharing the love by encouraging someone else!