February is not only Valentine’s month but also Heart awareness month. Heart disease is the number one killer of women! That is incredible and totally avoidable. Whether you’re a man or a woman there are few easy rules to follow to keep your heart healthy. This month save a heart of a friend or family member or your own by following these heart healthy tips. 

It may seem like a no-brainer but, do NOT smoke! Smoking increases your chances of heart disease and stroke! Women smokers have a 25% higher risk of heart disease than men. Besides it smells, makes your teeth yellow and looks stupid.

Exercise regularly. If you’re not an athlete, it is okay, just get outside and walk. Starting slow and building up to healthy exercise regimen is fine. Try taking the stairs instead of the elevator at your office, or walking around the block at lunchtime. Join a running club or exercise group, you will be challenged with others that are at your level.

Eating a heart healthy diet is crucial.  This means cut out the fried foods and saturated fats. Saturated fats can include red meat and high fat dairy products. Trans fats are also a no no. Trans fats can include deep-fried foods, fast foods, processed bakery products, packaged snack foods and margarines. Try eating salmon and oatmeal instead. Try and also keep your sodium levels down. This goes hand and hand with the next important tip. Know your numbers. This means, know your cholesterol and blood sugar levels.  You should know your LDL and HDL cholesterol levels.  By finding out your blood sugar levels you can keep yourself from becoming diabetic. Diabetes can lead to heart disease too.

Maintaining a healthy weight is also crucial to heart healthy living. More than 1/3 of all Americans are obese. That is startling. By eating healthy and exercising regularly, a healthy weight should be achievable. See you doctor or health care professional if your having trouble losing weight.

Having love in your heart and spreading it around is important too.  Happy heart and valentines month!

 

What you wear could be affecting your mood. I know it is the middle of winter and black or grey are just the easiest color to throw on, but you may be doing more harm than good to yourself and to others around you. Ever wonder why the color red is considered so sexy or romantic? W
hen we look at the color red our blood pressure actually rises. This may be why men think red nails or a red dress is so sexy. The opposite is true of the color blue. Blue causes blood pressure to lower and thus has a calming sensation on our brain and mood.

Next time you’e in a winter slump try a hot red nail polish or wear a bright pink sweater. If you tend to run a little hot naturally, try painting one wall in your bedroom a light blue and dim your lights to relax. Winter can get us down but just a pop of color can get us through until Spring!

I’m back from the other side….did you miss me? I got sick! I cannot believe it-it’s been two years. Despite all the daily Vitamin D intake, exercise and eating well, a germ got me. I guess I must’ve been run down.

Of course this happened at the worst time possible, three days before my cousin’s wedding, that I was a bridesmaid in. I was panicked, I could feel it coming on. I increased my vitamins to 6000 mg of Vitamin D, 2000 mg of Vitamin C, Zinc and Echinacea. Nothing was helping.  I slept, pushed fluids but the sinus infection was causing pain, pressure and a fever. I finally caved and started a z-pac. I usually am very against antibiotics because of the abuse of them in our society.  At the first sign of a sore throat Americans start popping antibiotics, eventually causing resistance to these drugs and possibly superbugs to thrive. In this particular situation I needed to take antibiotics to treat the sinus infection and relive my fever.  I have to admit that within 12 hours of starting I felt better.  Within 24 hours I was almost well and within 36 I completely better.

I think that taking antibiotics when necessary is fine but watch how dependent you are on them.  The problem is if you take them too often, they won’t work as well when you may actually need them. There is no way to stay safe from getting sick this winter season, just keeping washing your hands and getting as much sleep as possible.