It’s FABuary and it’s heart healthy month! And what better time to take care of your health so that you look and feel FABULOUS?!! I’m so excited because next week I’ll be going to New York for the Red Dress Awards, to be with my friends from the American Heart Association. I’ve been volunteering with them for over 20 years because taking care of your heart is so important and educating people about how to make that happen is a passion of mine.
Heart disease is the number one killer for all of us. Studies show it has roughly 40 percent to do with your family history, but 60 percent to do with your lifestyle!!! Isn’t that great? We can control 60 percent of it by embracing a healthy lifestyle—how you exercise, how you move, how you eat and how you think! Exercise is the best preventative medicine there is. And an overall good, healthy lifestyle is the key.
Your heart is a muscle that needs to be conditioned, just like the other muscles in your body. That means cardiovascular exercise to keep it pumping and your blood circulation flowing, And that’s why I’m a true believer in at least three days a week of workouts like my Fat Blasting Cardio workout, my all new Walk With Me workout, my Super Charged Cardio Burn, or any of the great new cardio workouts, all available in my 10-Week Plan.
Food has a lot to do with it, too. Eating heart-healthy food such as lean proteins, and whole grains are great, along with healthy fats such as avocados, olive oil and walnuts. And let’s not forget about Omega 3s, which can be found in fish. Omega 3s are unsaturated fatty acids that have been known to lower cholesterol, lower blood pressure and reduce blood clotting and inflammation. Inflammation in the body can damage your blood vessels and lead to heart disease. Eating the right amount of food is key, too. Balanced meals in smaller portions with the right nutrition is the way to go. And if you need help with this, my eating plan has it all figured out for you and can give you the tools to good eating that can last a lifetime.
Whether it’s family history or your lifestyle, the combination of high cholesterol, high blood pressure and high blood sugar can all lead to heart disease. But there are so many ways to help prevent it RIGHT NOW just by making some changes to your daily habits, and what better time to learn how than NOW!
Here are my top tips for heart health…
- Learn your family history of heart disease so you know what you may be up against. The more you know, the more you can prevent. Then visit your doctor to get your cholesterol and blood pressure checked each year.
- Measure your waistline. Recent studies have shown that that extra weight that you’re carrying around your mid-section can have a direct correlation to your risk of heart disease. So if you’re finding that you have an extra spare tire around your middle, then it’s time to target tone that waist! Studies show that if your waistline is over two inches in circumference larger than your hips, you are at risk for heart disease because the closest the fat is to the heart the harder it is for your heart to combat that inflammation and stay healthy. So pay attention to your core! Target tone your waistline with plank twists and crunches, while pulling in your abdominals to flatten that belly, and being aware of your posture and zipping up those abs!
- Avoid salty foods. You best choices are low in sodium so keep an eye on your ingredients and don’t over salt your food.
- Manage your stress. Make time for one of my good stress-releasing workouts, try some meditation or some yoga…deep breathing and stretching gets the oxygen flowing and the blood pumping…and then just make time to simply unplug from all your electronics for a few hours and smell the roses!
- Eat whole foods. Whole grains, fruits, a variety of veggies, fish, lean meats and nuts should all be a part of your regular diet all year long.
- Get plenty of sleep. Your body needs 8 hours of sleep to stay charged. Plus when you’re overtired you’re tempted to eat things that are high in sugar and carbohydrates for a quick energy boost, and that isn’t good for your heart, either. So be sure and get enough Zzz’s!
For more tips on heart health, visit the American Heart Association website: www.Heart.org.
Stay fit forever!