Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there! One way we can love and appreciate the dad’s in our lives is to help them with a critical health area - heart health! Consider these contributing factors to his heart health when planning a gift or celebration for your loved one this Sunday.
Fruits & Veggies
Not only are fruits and vegetables low in calories and high in dietary fiber and antioxidants, they can help keep blood pressure in check. High blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart attack and stroke. They are packed with potassium, which studies have shown lowers blood pressure. Good picks to help your dad reach the recommended 3,400 mg/day are tomatoes, spinach, potatoes, bananas and squash.
The amount and type of fat you eat makes a difference. Research has found that saturated and trans fats may have negative effects on heart health. Replacing sources of saturated fats (bacon, red meat, butter, ice cream) and trans fats (commercial baked goods, fried foods) with unsaturated fats has been shown to be beneficial for overall cardiovascular health. Foods including olive oil, canola oil, avocados, walnuts and almonds contain unsaturated fat, which may help cholesterol levels by raising "good" HDL cholesterol and lowering "bad" LDL cholesterol.
Omega-3 fatty-acids, a type of unsaturated fat, have been found to be helpful in preventing sudden death from heart attacks. Fatty fish, such as salmon, mackerel, tuna and herring provide these fats.
Activity & Stress Management
Dad should engage in moderate-intensity, aerobic activity throughout the week and ideally on most days of the week. Simple activities that incorporate aerobic and strength training as well as balance and flexibility exercises make a big difference in dad’s health. However, even if you eat right and exercise regularly, poorly managed stress can wreak havoc on your health. Getting enough sleep, practicing relaxation techniques and nurturing relationships are healthy habits that can help protect you from the harmful effects of stress.
Have a happy and healthy Father’s Day! If you know of a dad who is ready for some help to improve his heart health contact me today - 540-599-9378