February is American Heart Month! According to The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, lifestyle and habits can create Heart Healthy Living.
Eat Healthy Foods
Eat vegetables, protein-rich foods (like fish, nuts, and eggs), and oils and foods high in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats (like avocados, nuts and seeds, salmon, and tofu).
Limit Unhealthy Foods
Sodium: Limit sodium intake. Adults and children over age 14 should eat less than 2,300 milligrams of sodium a day. Read labels and opt to cook with herbs and spices instead of salt.
Avoid Trans Fats: Read nutrition labels and avoid “trans” fats. These are found in desserts, microwave popcorn, frozen pizza, stick margarine, and coffee creamers.
Limit Added Sugars: Limiting added sugars will make more room in your diet for nutrient-rich foods. Added sugars are in soft drinks, cookies, ice cream, frozen desserts, jams, and other sweet treats.
Instead, drink water and unsweetened drinks. Eat unsweetened snacks and deserts. If eating sweetened food or drinks, limit portion size.
Limit Alcohol: Talk to your doctor about how much alcohol you drink. Drinking alcohol, which has calories, can increase weight, raises blood pressure, and raises risks of other diseases.
Increase Physical Activity
Physical activity can help you lose weight, improve physical fitness, and decrease heart disease risk factors. It even improves mental health!
Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans recommends that each week, adults get at least:
2 hours and 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity (for example, 30 minutes 5 days a week), or
1 hour and 15 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity (for example, 25 minutes 3 days a week), or
A combination of both moderate-intensity and vigorous-intensity activity.
Long Valley Health Center Cares for Your Heart
Primary care physicians at LVHC provide a wide range of Medical Services, like detecting and managing high blood pressure and promoting chronic disease prevention. Additionally, LVHC has a seasonal community garden. In summertime, come walk through our garden, enjoy the outdoors, and pick some vegetables for your next meal.
Also check out our list of community resources that can help with accessing healthy foods year round.