Did you know that February is American Heart Month, and not because of Valentine’s Day? Every year since its congressional approval in 1963, the President has issued a proclamation to this effect, to help raise public awareness of heart disease.
“Heart disease takes the lives of far too many people in this country, depriving their families and communities of someone they love and care for—a father, a mother, a wife, a friend, a neighbor, a spouse. With more than 2 million heart attacks and strokes a year, and 800,000 deaths, just about all of us have been touched by someone who has had heart disease, heart attack, or a stroke.”
- Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius
February is American Heart Month, and unfortunately, most of us know someone who has or had heart disease or stroke. Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States; one in every three deaths is from heart disease and stroke, equal to 2,200 deaths per day.
Here are some things we can all do to help our hearts:
- Limit intake of fat
- Choose heart-healthy fats over saturated fats and trans fats
- Limit intake of sugars
- Limit intake of sodium/salt
- Choose more whole grains, legumes, fresh fruit and veggies and low fat dairy products
- Choose lean meat and poultry
- Include fish in our diet
- Exercise portion control
- Become physically active for 30 to 60 minutes a day
- Stop smoking
- Limit intake of alcohol
Even though most people associate heart disease with men, it’s also the leading cause of death among women. To raise awareness of this fact, the American Heart Association’s Go Red campaign aims to help women take action against heart disease. So please consider showing your support by wearing something red tomorrow on National Wear Red Day, Friday, February 1st.
For a heart healthy breakfast item, be sure to check out Hodgdon Island Inn’s “Heart-Healthy Parfait” recipe.