It’s February and its heart healthy reminder time! Love your heart! Love your sweetheart’s heart! A little
box of chocolates (dark please), a bouquet of flowers, a romantic dinner, a special treat, and other ways to
let someone know you love them are all great. But the BEST way to say “I Love You” is to take care of
yourself and taking care of your heart is of the most importance. Heart disease is the leading cause of
death, but with good advice and habits, we can practice preventative care in spite of risk factors and avoid
ending up in the emergency room. We’ve been reading articles online and found all kinds of tips. Here are
just a few to keep in mind:
1. Don’t smoke or use tobacco. This is one of the most significant risk factors for developing heart
disease. Regardless of what the labels say (low tar, less nicotine), it is still smoke and it is still filled with
a multitude of chemicals that are bad for you. Yes, its hard to quit. But within a few days, a month, a
year, you are adding years to your life. There are many stop smoking programs available, and many
insurance companies are now covering the costs of these programs.
2. Exercise at least 30 minutes a day if possible. Go for a walk, park at the end of the parking lot, take the
stairs instead of the elevator. If you sit at a desk most of the day, make yourself get up and walk around
at least once an hour. If you have a dog, then you know that it wants to go for a walk every day (good
for both of you!) If possible, join a walking or hiking group. You don’t have to belong to a fitness club to
get a daily dose of exercise even though working out with someone nearby seems to have a
psychological effect on how you do (I can do more than she can…) Exercise also has an effect on your
stress level and in turn can cause changes in your blood pressure, and in turn will help your weight and
all sorts of positive things for your good health!
3. Eating a heart healthy diet. Hopefully your daily menu is low in fat, cholesterol and salt, and rich in
fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low-fat dairy products. Eating more fish is also good because of the
Omega-3 fatty acids. Keep the saturated and trans fat levels as low as possible. You don’t have to
resort to grass and twigs (!) but doing some research and making gradual changes will make a
difference. As a national group, we tend to like salty and sweet foods - neither of which are healthy.
Cutting out salted butter can make a big difference, and using natural sea salts is much better for you if
you feel you need that salt taste. Knowing what is in your packaged food can be very eye-opening.
There is a new awareness of this thanks to the ongoing publicity regarding GMO foods, and an app we
have found very useful is FOODUCATE. It is available for both iPhone and Android phones. Easy to
use and full of information!
4. Maintain a healthy weight. The older we get, the more weight gain is fat rather than muscle. (Sorry, it’s
a medical fact!) So many factors point to what is the best weight for your body type - bone mass, body
mass index, what kind of muscle mass you have. Check with your health provider to plan a target
number for healthy weight. Even a small weight loss can be beneficial if you are carrying more than you
5. Get regular health screenings. Updated health coverage provides an annual check up that is either free
or very low cost. Keep records of your doctor visits. Know what those numbers mean. You don’t have
to become a walking encyclopedia about your personal health, but know what is going on inside!
More tips from your source for Roseville Home Insurance and Rocklin Home Insurance!