February is Heart Health and awareness month. Here’s a few tips for keeping your heart healthy and strong:
- Get active – Regular physical activity has many benefits such as helping you quit smoking, lose weight, reduce stress, lower blood pressure and increase HDL cholesterol
- Quit Smoking – We know smoking is bad for our health and that research shows quitting smoking reduces our heart risk. Now is the time to quit!
- Manage Stress – It’s important to learn how to recognize how stress affects you, learn how to deal with it, and develop healthy habits to ease your stress. Stress is your body’s response to change. The body reacts to it by releasing adrenaline (a hormone) that causes your breathing and heart rate to speed up, and your blood pressure to rise. Constant or continuous stress can be harmful to your heart health. The good news is you can actively manage your stress before it becomes a problem.
- Eat Healthy – Do you really know what it means to eat healthy? The AHA recently developed new dietary guidelines to help us better understand how to eat healthy and help lower our heart disease risk.
What to Do: According to the new AHA guidelines, eating right means:
- Eat more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy, poultry, fish and nuts
- Avoid red meat, as well as sugary and processed foods
- Avoid foods high in sodium
Content provided by: The American Heart Association/Go Red for Women