During Heart Month take a moment to listen to your heart.
What is it telling you?
What does it need?
What does it yearn for?
Women are great at compartmentalizing and multitasking. Too often, however, we put the idea of taking care of ourselves away — out of mind to take care of other things. The danger of neglecting your health is eventually you won’t be able to do the things you want and need to do.
Take the time this month to really face the facts and give the engine that powers your life, your heart, what it needs to be healthy.
Your heart yearns for:
Information: Do you know your blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol levels – and what the numbers mean? Check out the American Heart Association’s Go Red For Women Heart Check Up and my new book, The Busy Woman’s Guide to a Healthy Heart, to help you understand your risk of heart disease and what you can do to reduce the risk.
Activity: Fitting exercise into your busy life can be a challenge. Find some tips and tricks to be more active in these articles and my e-book The Busy Woman’s Guide to an Active Lifestyle. Being active cuts your risk of heart disease in half!
Grow Food:Grow Foods, a term coined by Registered Dietitian Jill Fleming, are items on which the sun has recently shined. The more refined and processed something is, the farther from a “grow food” it becomes. Raw vegetables and fruits are great examples of “grow foods,” as are whole grains. These foods fuel your body; allowing young children to grow and adults to thrive. Find tips, recipes and strategies to eat better in these articles. A diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low fat protein can reduce your risk of heart disease significantly.
Clean Air: Cigarette smoke is the leading cause of preventable death in the United States and is the fast track to heart disease. Women who smoke triple their risk of heart disease. If you live or work in a smoky environment your risk doubles. If you smoke, quitting is the best thing you can do for your health and the health of your family. Avoid smoke whenever possible and join efforts to enact smoking bans. Find more information, tips to quit and ways to get involved in these articles.
Connection: Women who maintain positive friendships with other women are 30% less likely to develop heart disease. Nurture relationships with people who support and encourage you. Find ways to connect – even using new tools such as Facebook and Twitter in these articles.
Involvement: Doing good feels good. Make the time to do something outside of yourself and you daily chores. Volunteer your time, mentor someone, or join a cause — may I suggest the Go Red For Women movement and the You’re The Cure Network of the American Heart Association? When you wonder, “What am I doing? Is this all there is?” Make sure you have an answer – get involved!
Me Time: Yes, taking time for yourself is an important part of being healthy. Indulging in activities you enjoy, finding quiet time to relax, or simply taking a break isn’t selfish it is essential. Find tips to recharge, unplug, and relax in these articles and in The Busy Woman’s Guide to Recharging Kit.
Your health is important to the people who love and depend on you. Do something good for them, and for yourself during Heart Month.
Eliz Greene is the Busy Woman’s Guide to a Health. Drawing on her experience surviving a massive heart attack while seven-months pregnant with twins, struggling to lose the 80 pounds gained during her pregnancy, and her background as an adaptive movement specialist, Eliz developed simple strategies and tips to help other busy women be more active, eat better and manage your stress.
As the Director of the Embrace Your Heart Wellness Initiative, Eliz travels the country energizing and inspiring audiences in keynotes and workshops on women’s heart health. She writes one of the top 100 health and wellness blogs. Find more at www.EmbraceYourHeart.com.