Love Your Heart, Love Yourself: Tips for Heart Health in 2021

Each February, the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) marks American Heart Month by raising awareness about heart health along with urging Americans to reduce their risk factors for developing cardiovascular disease.

In honor of Heart Awareness Month, (NHLBI) asks for help to spread the word about risk factors and how to live a heart-healthy lifestyle. We’re honored to be a platform for such important information.

Did you know heart disease is a leading cause of death in both women and men in the United States? That’s a scary but very real fact. When you dig further, it’s certainly a wake-up call.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one person dies every 36 seconds in the United States from cardiovascular disease. Paying attention now?

You can start creating a healthy life for you and your family to avoid being a statistic. 

That change starts NOW:

  • Exercise
  • Healthy Diet
  • Healthy Living

It’s time to focus on your cardiovascular health. Your lifestyle choices filter down to those around you, including your children. As a role model, they will learn what living a healthy lifestyle means. Kids are never too young to learn healthy habits and while chicken nuggets and fries are part of growing up, there are so many other options out there. Kids that are exposed to healthy eating habits grow up to be adults with healthy eating habits. 

Maintaining heart health as a family is a fun way to bond and create memories. Spending time together and enjoying one another will create a less stressful environment, which will lower your risk of heart disease.

  • Take walks as a family
    • Explore nature
    • Track all your steps and see who has the most
    • Reconnect and talk about what’s going on in everyone’s life 
    • Cook healthy meals together
      • Give each family member a task
  • Promotes learning, whether it’s relating to colors for the younger kids or measurements for the older kids 
    • Replaces fast food trips
  • Make healthy choices together
    • Teaches accountability
    • Provides support 
    • Leads to confidence 

When’s the last time you’ve had your annual checkup? This is a vital step to understanding your current state of health. You may uncover something unexpected that when caught early enough, can be treated. Again, it also shows your children what it means to take care of yourself. 

Health has been at the forefront of our minds over the past year. COVID-19 has created more awareness of how fragile we really are. Harvard Medical School tells us pre-existing heart conditions and poor metabolic health increase the risk of severe COVID-19. 

Now, more than ever, the importance of maintaining a healthy body is essential in our current environment. While the vaccine is making its rounds across the world, COVID is far from over. It’s never too late to start making alterations in your life. Do it for yourself. Do it for your loved ones.

February is about taking care of our hearts emotionally and physically. Valentine’s Day is a time to share our love with our spouses, partners, relatives, friends, and pets. Believe it or not, love promotes heart health: 

Heart Awareness Month is in February, Heart Awareness Day and National Wear Red Day is February 5th, and Valentines Day, as you know, is February 14th. While these are reminders to keep your heart healthy by taking care of your body and your mind, every day should be a day to celebrate your heart.

What color represents all of these special observances? Red, of course. Dress in red as a family this year on February 5th to help spread awareness about heart disease. Now’s the time to wear your heart on your sleeve. Pun intended. 

The heart is one of the body’s most crucial organs. It pumps oxygen and nutrient-rich blood throughout your body to sustain life. Many of us take our hearts for granted, however, the statistics don’t lie. Live a healthy lifestyle, teach, guide, and be a positive example for others, and avoid being a statistic.