Not only is February the month to celebrate LOVE—it’s also American Heart Month and we couldn’t think of a better time to get heart-healthy! Whether it is for you or for a loved one—do what it takes to be heart-healthy this year! Regular exercise and a healthy diet are two of the best ways to benefit your heart, but there are many little things you can do each day to boost your heart health. Here are a few tips:
Say “Yes”: Does your sweetheart want to take you out for a night on the town? Did you get an invite for a girls/guys night out? Say YES! Socializing benefits your emotional well-being and level of happiness. When you opt to stay in and hibernate solo you risk allowing stress, loneliness and depression to take over—all of which can raise your blood pressure, damaging your heart.
Catch those Zs: Sleep is an essential thing that we all need in order to survive and function each day. If you aren’t getting enough you could be damaging your heart—lack of sleep raises your blood pressure and puts unnecessary strain on your heart. Not only is lack of sleep bad for your heart, but it could also affect your weight, mood and productivity level.
Housework: Do you apathetically stroll through your house doing those necessary “chores”? Put a little zest into your housework and make it a fun work out instead of a dreadful chore. You will be surprised how hard you can push yourself when cleaning. Turn on some tunes while cleaning and bust a few dance moves along the way. It will get your heart pumping and even boost your mood.
Walk instead of drive: Do you live in walking distance to the local grocery store? Walk. If you don’t live close enough to walk you can always choose to park in the last parking stall in the lot and get a few extra steps in.
At work: Do you sit all day in an office or at a desk? If so, get up and move as often as possible. Get up and grab a drink at the water cooler, walk to your co-workers desk to ask a question instead of simply paging them or even worse, yelling across the office at them. Use the on-site gym, if you have one, for breaks to clear your mind and get your heart pumping.
Written by Amy Jensen