You’ll find plenty of heart-shaped chocolates at your local stores during this time of year, but February is also Heart Month. The goal is to raise awareness about heart disease while cultivating strategies you need to keep a healthy heart at any age.
Valentine’s Day makes the perfect time to become more aware of your heart health. When you take care of yourself, you give the world the gift of showing up your best. Your significant other will feel secure that you’re healthy and happy. Everyone benefits.
Self-care starts with your heart. When you focus on this vital organ, you feel better, have more energy, reduce your risk of other diseases, and cultivate the confidence that you will be healthy at any age.
To cover all your heart-healthy bases, you need the right nutrients.
Even if you deviate from your eating plan a bit on this special day, you’ll want to ensure you’re getting the nutrients that your heart — and your entire body — require to thrive. A multivitamin, for instance, can cover the nutrient bases you’re not getting from food.
Our Essential Packets, formulated for women and men, combine a multivitamin, and all the other nutrients you need, in one easy-to-take packet.
You can make this Valentine’s Day — or any day — heart healthy by taking these nutrients with one of your meals. It’s that easy to know you’re getting the nutrients your body needs to thrive.
With these strategies, you’ll have everything your heart requires to stay healthy for Valentine’s Day and beyond.
- Make fish for dinner. Wild-caught, cold-water seafood is a superfood: rich in protein, nutrients, and healthy fats. The two dominant omega-3 fatty acids in fish, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), provide powerful heart protection. It’s been shown that people who eat more fish have healthier hearts. Not a fish fan? Opt instead for our OmegaGenics EPA-DHA 1000 supplement to get those critical nutrients.
- Explore new recipes. Recent headlines tell the story clearly, up to 90% of Canadians don’t like cooking, and they’re spending thousands of dollars to avoid it. During Covid and lockdown eating out is not an option and grabbing convenience foods, easily add up against your wallet and around your waistline. Valentine’s Day makes a great time to get in the kitchen and experiment with a new dish. Make it fun. Put on some great music and keep the conversation lively.
- Make it sweet and healthy. You never need to deprive yourself, on Valentine’s Day or otherwise. That doesn’t mean you should indulge in sugary, processed foods. Besides, eating a heavy dessert after a big dinner makes a surefire way to zap your romantic mood.
- Add these heart-healthy seeds. Flaxseeds and chia seeds are rich in alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), another anti-inflammatory fatty acid that — like EPA and DHA — can support heart health and much more.
- Go for the rainbow. A wide array of colorful vegetables and fruits can provide nutrients that protect your heart. Banish any idea of vegetables being boring! Really step up those plant foods for Valentine’s dinner! Fresh or frozen organic berries make a delicious, naturally sweet dessert.
- Indulge in dark chocolate. The heart-healthy flavonoids in dark chocolate can lower inflammation, improve blood pressure, support blood circulation, and lots more.All of those benefits reduce your risk of heart disease. Most drugstore chocolates don’t make the cut for healthy chocolate. Look for organic dark chocolate with at least 80 percent cacao and no more than four grams of sugar per serving. Be sure to check your portion size, too: Most bars contain several servings!
- Work it out. Moving just 30 minutes a day five days a week can make your heart healthier and reduce your heart disease risk. Physical activity can mean anything that moves your body. For Valentine’s Day, that might mean cross-country skiing, skating, snowshoeing, or going for a walk with your partner. Throw on some catchy tunes and make movement fun!
- Put on something funny. A fun romantic-comedy, feel-good romance, or other lighthearted movie or TV show can be just what you need to dial down a stressful day. Studies show that a good laugh can lower stress, decrease inflammation in your arteries, and support a healthy cholesterol profile.
- Do some down dogs. Rather than veg out with TV reruns after a filling dinner, consider a yoga class or doing some poses at home. Yoga can provide a physical workout while also helping you reduce stress and even support heart health.
- Cultivate your bliss. Whether you spend Valentine’s Day alone or with someone, mindset determines everything. An optimistic, can-do attitude can help lower stress, anxiety, and other mood disorders that can contribute to heart disease You can’t eliminate stress, but you can create ways to dial it down. How you do that depends on what works for you. Meditation, deep breathing, yoga, or watching a funny movie can all boost your mood while being heart healthy.
- Hit the bedroom earlier. Not for that, although studies do show people who have less sexual activity have a higher risk of heart disease. We’re talking about sleep here. Regardless of other risk factors such as your age and overall health, not getting sufficient shuteye can increase your risk of heart disease and many other health issues. Aim for at least seven and preferably more closer to eight or nine hours every night of solid, uninterrupted sleep. Try increasing your quality sleep with a magnesium glycinate supplement if you have trouble falling or staying asleep.
- Take your vitamins. Even if you’re not completely on track health-wise during Valentine’s Day, that doesn’t mean you should skip the nutrients you need. Taking a few key vitamins can optimize your overall heart health.