You might be over the moon this Valentine’s Day, but some of us are nursing our broken hearts. Boo hoo, oh well! But, apart from the doom and gloom that comes with this day, there is a silver lining. Here are some healthy habits for hearth health, which if followed, will keep your ticker ticking all year round.
If you were to do nothing else, doing this is crucial. Monitoring what you put into your body, a.k.a your eating habits will give your heart the most love. Bonus: The rest of your body will feel loved too. Here are some heart healthy foods.
Fruits and Veggies
This may be a no brainer but it is one of the top ways to keep your heart healthy. Fruits and veggies are a great source of minerals + vitamins. But how you cook your produce matters so stay away from deep frying. Avoid consuming flavored and creamy sauces. Keep your fruits and veggies fresh. But if you have to go with a canned option make sure that they are stored in water or juice. Sodium is always a worrying element of canned veggies so rinse them before eating or choose low sodium options.
Healthy habits for heart include consuming whole grains which are a fantastic source of fiber and carbohydrates. Whole grains can even help regulate your internal blood flow. What you are looking for is whole wheat and whole grains like brown rice, steel-cut oatmeal, etc. Be careful of grains glazed in sugar that give it a brown, whole grain-like look.
Fats have a bad rep. We need fats, there we meant it, we said it, we’re here to represent it. Think of good fats as a nice lubricant that smoothens out the lining of your blood vessels, and bad fat as a greasy jelly that clogs them instead. You want to be looking for heart healthy foods like monounsaturated fats (good), opposed to trans or saturated fats (bad). Where can I find these you may think? Here is where:
- Olive oil
- Canola oil (nut-based oils)
- Stay away from trans fats like butter, bacon fat and lard.
Move yourself. The heart is a muscular organ, it pumps blood to your system. You’ve heard this said forever – "Exercise is good for you" and is one of the best natural ways to prevent heart disease (just like reading this article!) When you exercise you strengthen the muscular walls of the heart, this allows your ticker to pump out more blood in a more efficient manner, making you less prone to various conditions from fatigue, to heart disease. Regular exercise also increases your good cholesterol while torching the bad. Time to pump it up!
Being fit is just about one simple rule. Go easy on your yourself, love yourself, and keep everything in balance. Your heart, your mind, and your body will thank you for it. Happy Valentine’s Day peeps!