Traditionally the month for lovers, February also reminds us to take care of our heart. It is American Heart Month. The month kicks off with National Wear Red Day to raise awareness about women and heart disease (celebrated on February 1st, 2019).
The annual celebration of American Heart Month began in 1963 to encourage Americans to join the battle against heart disease. A presidential proclamation pays tribute each year to researchers, physicians, public health professionals and volunteers for their tireless efforts in preventing, treating and researching heart disease, which is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States. In fact, every year 1 in 4 deaths are caused by heart disease.
Hospitals and health systems around the country celebrate American Heart Month by helping to raise awareness in their communities about heart disease. Many hold free screenings and heart health awareness events.
It’s a great time for all of us to commit to a healthy lifestyle and make small changes that can lead to a lifetime of heart health.
Along with a healthy diet plan, these seven tips from maxliving.com can create sustainable, lasting changes for heart health:
- Maintain a healthy weight – Obesity increases your risk for heart disease and other health issues.
- Make an oil change – Cooking and drizzling with the right oils (think olive oil) can have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and blood vessel support benefits.
- Fix your gut – Fiber, probiotics and prebiotics support a healthy gut and a healthy heart.
- Try these heart healthy supplements – Many foods contain heart healthy nutrients, but you may want to supplement your diet with a quality multivitamin/mineral.
- Get sufficient sleep – Sleep deprivation can increase sympathetic nervous system activity, contributing to heart disease.
- Exercise regularly – Government data recommends 150 minutes of moderate intensity activity weekly, which can reduce your risk for heart attacks.
- Manage stress levels – Learn what works best for YOU to keep your stress levels down.
You may also choose to donate to the American Heart Association. When you donate there, you’re joining the fight against our nation’s #1 and #5 killers – heart disease and stroke. For more information or to donate go to https://www.heart.org/en/get-involved/ways-to-give