February is a month known for its celebration of heart, romance and love. It is also the month to make your heart healthy! When it comes to diet and exercise, there are a few things you can do to make sure your ticker is operating at peak performance. CPH & Associates has gathered a few helpful tips to love your heart this month.
Use as Much as You Consume:
Any basic rule of health is to consume the same amount of calories as you burn off. The best tip for this would be to track your calories through out the day. This means tracking the amount of food and water intake as well as a calorie count of what has been burned through exercise. There are all sorts of ways to track all of this information, but in this modern age, all it takes is downloading a free App on your smartphone!
Eat All The Food Groups
Let’s face it: some foods taste better than others. Although a juicy burger sounds more appetizing than steamed broccoli, both represent important food groups. There’s a reason why it’s recommended to eat fruits, veggies, grains, dairy, and proteins — it’s because your body needs them all, unless you have food allergies. Each food group has a specific purpose for your body. Healthy food doesn’t have to be bland and boring — there are tons of cookbooks and online recipes that are both healthy and delicious.
Eat Less Bad Food
What is bad food, anyway? It is anything that does not serve a positive purpose for your body, like overly-fatty meats, processed food, sugar-based beverages and high-sodium meals. The same foods can easily be adapted to be heart-healthy: lean cuts of meats, all-natural or organic foods, juices instead of sodas, and cooking with less salt – an easy adjustment to make, keeping your favorites while making them much healthier. For highly-processed food, follow this simple guideline: if you can’t pronounce the words listed in the ingredients, you should probably leave it on the grocery shelf.
Have a Drink
Even alcohol consumption can include healthy adjustments. For example, drinking red wine instead of white: red wine has antioxidants which are good for the heart.
Live A Healthy Lifestyle
Even with a healthy diet, our bodies are simply not designed to sit in a chair all day — we need exercise to stay healthy. This could mean going for a walk, or run, or getting a gym membership and actually using it. Don’t be intimated by the bulging biceps and rippling abs — they have their goals, you have yours. The gym is also a great place to meet a workout buddy to motivate you, or score some free diet and exercise advice from the aforementioned rippling abs.