Take Heart

February isn’t just for Valentine’s Day! It is also National Heart Month, an opportunity to raise awareness about heart disease and prevention. According to the CDC, heart disease continues to be the leading cause of death in the United States for both men and women. The good news? With just a few dietary and lifestyle changes, eighty percent of cardiovascular disease may be preventable. The American Heart Association reminds us to take care of our ticker at any age with just a few of the following non-dietary tips:

  • Move. Get at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic activity per week- such as brisk walking or pickleball. And don’t forget to add muscle-strengthening resistance training at least 2x per week.

  • Quit smoking. Here are some helpful resources to help you stop vaping and smoking for good.

  • Hit the Snooze Button. Since there is a direct correlation between sleep, immune function, and overall emotional well-being, experts remind us to sleep at least 7-9 hours per night.

  • De-stress. Laughter, deep breathing, and a regular meditation practice have been found to lower cortisol levels that may play a role in heart disease, as well as other chronic diseases, such as diabetes. Learn how you can incorporate meditation in your daily routine. Start here.

  • Know your risk. You are never too young to understand your risk factors for coronary artery disease or the warning signs of a heart attack or stroke. Did you know that heart attack symptoms in women can be different from men? Whether you are male or female, age 30 or 70, use the AHA’s Check.Change.Control.Calculator to estimate your personal risk factors.

And now the Heart-Healthy Dietary Tips!

Over the last several months, our talented chef Andrea Dicarlo and I sat down to create a new line of Healthy and Fit meals that taste delicious and align with the guidelines of American Heart Association, all UNDER 500 CALORIES. These tasty single serve meals are as good for you as they are delicious, packing a nutritious punch with beneficial fats, lean proteins, and fiber-rich veggies and carbs to help you meet your dietary goals. They can also be incorporated in the Dash and Mediterranean diets, once again the top two diets for heart health in US News and World Report.

Some heart-healthy take-aways:
  1. Eat fish high in omega 3’s, such as salmon and cod, at least 2x per week. Try our new Healthy & Fit Quinoa-Encrusted Salmon with an edamame, black bean & bell pepper sauté or the Salmon Cake with portobello mushroom, garbanzo bean & carrot mélange to boost your intake of healthy fats and complex carbohydrates.

  2. Eat your veggies. From Swiss chard to sweet potatoes, TNH has what you need to stir fry, sauté, stuff, and eat your way to increased immune-boosting ingredients. With our new Grilled Chicken Bento Box, you can eat well on the go. (Eat your heart out, processed foods!)

  3. Boost with berries. Berries are full of soluble fiber and nutritious phytochemicals. They’re a tasty addition to your cereal or yogurt, and don’t forget to add a sprinkle of ground flaxseed and chia seeds to boost heart health. (Psst…our healthy smoothies are also packed with these healthful ingredients.)

  4. Please pass the plant protein. Beans, edamame, and lentils are loaded with B-vitamins and fiber. Try our new soups: Lentil Wild Mushroom or Roasted Turkey, White Bean & Barley to make your heart sing.

  5. Go nuts. Snack on healthy nuts like almonds, walnuts, or our yummy home-made roasted pumpkin seeds.

Young or old, it’s never too late to embrace a healthy lifestyle and reduce your heart disease risks. Be sure to check out our complete line of Healthy & Fit meals to make eating smart both convenient and delicious.

Have questions or comments? I’d love to hear from you! Click here to send Sandra an email.