February is American Heart Month. But it’s such an important topic, it deserves more than 28 days of attention. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States. And, in the US, someone has a heart attack every 40 seconds! Fortunately, there are many ways you can reduce your risk of heart disease through diet, activity, and daily lifestyle changes. The benefits of these quick tips can quickly add up and help you focus on heart health throughout February and year-round!
Eat healthy fats and avoid trans fats: Fat is necessary for a healthy diet, but not all fats are created equal. It’s important to look for healthy ones like polyunsaturated, saturated, and unsaturated fats. Trans fat is the kind that can increase levels of LDL cholesterol in the bloodstream. LDL are considered negative cholesterol that can build up in the bloodstream and lower positive HDL cholesterol levels. To incorporate healthy fats in your meals, opt for “loin” cuts of meats; bake, broil, lightly sauté, stir-fry, or roast foods in olive oil or nut oils; and experiment with adding chia seeds, flaxseeds, and nuts to salads and snacks.
Opt for reduced sodium: Having too much sodium makes the body hold on to excess fluid, which increases blood pressure and adds extra strain on the heart. Based on this, the simple act of choosing reduced sodium versions of packaged foods can go a long way to improving heart health. Select low or no-sodium soups, canned goods, and other prepared foods. Cook with spices rather than salt to reduce sodium in homemade cooking. And check nutrition labels and opt for foods with lower sodium counts. Keep in mind the American Heart Association recommends no more than 2,300 milligrams of sodium per day!
Focus on omega-3 fatty acids: These powerful nutrients are found in many common foods, and they deliver health benefits across the board, from fighting depression and anxiety, to improving eye health, to reducing symptoms of ADHD in children. For heart health, they perhaps produce the biggest bang by:
• Reducing triglycerides and blood pressure
• Increasing “good” HDL cholesterol
• Preventing blood clots
• Reducing plaque
• Decreasing inflammation
To add more omega-3 fatty acids to your diet, seek out fish like salmon, albacore tuna (with water), mackerel, trout, and sardines, or plant-based products like walnuts, almonds, soybeans, chia seeds, hemp seeds, and flaxseeds.
Get your fruits and veggies: This is always a healthy-eating go-to tip, as fruits and vegetables are good for you across the board. In terms of heart health, both fruits and vegetables are high in potassium and other nutrients that can lower blood pressure and prevent cardiovascular disease. Also, eating more fruits and vegetables can “fill you up”, making you less inclined to eat foods that are not as beneficial, such as meat, cheeses, and sugary snacks.
Plan, plan, plan: Too often, we find ourselves tired from a long day or pressed for time with busy schedules, and we opt for quick, unhealthy meals or snacks on the run. To offset this, a little planning can go a long way for heart health. Aim to spend some time on the weekends preparing vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains to either grab as snacks or to reheat throughout the week. Stock up on pantry staples so that you can make healthy meals quickly. Also, prepare a grocery list for the week. Having a plan helps you stay on track and balance your meals.
Focusing on your heart health can be a lifesaver in February and year-round. And it’s never too late to implement these tips. Remember, every action counts!
Information Source: https://www.denverymca.org/blog/5-quick-tips-healthy-heart-heart
The medical research and education supported by the generosity of our donors is helping more and more people survive heart disease, stroke, and improve their overall quality of life!
Our program has been able to link donors with top researchers and institutions who continue to advance technology and medicine to provide safer and more effective prevention and treatment options. Some of the projects our program has recently been able to support include, but are not limited to:
The heart is part of your body’s circulatory system. It’s made up of the atria, ventricles, valves, and various arteries and veins. The main function of your heart is to keep blood that’s full of oxygen circulating throughout your body. Because your heart is crucial to your survival, it’s important to keep it healthy with a well-balanced diet and exercise, and avoid things that can damage it, like smoking.
While you’re probably familiar with a few heart-healthy tips, there are some fun facts about the heart that you may not know:
The Takeaway: Your heart affects every part of your body. That also means that diet, lifestyle, and your emotional well-being can affect your heart. Emotional and physical health are both important for maintaining a healthy heart.
Information Source: https://www.healthline.com/health/fun-facts-about-the-heart
February 14th isn’t just about flowers and heart shaped boxes of chocolates. February 14th was National Donor Day. National Donor Day is a day to focus on all types of donations – organ, eye, tissue, blood, platelets, and of course, donations like those who donate with Science Care. It was also a day to appreciate our donors and loved ones who have given the gift of life, have received a donation, or are currently waiting.
The gift of donation touches every part of our lives, the lives of our loved ones, and the lives of all future generations. Donation is the gift that lives on in us all.
Did you know you can register your intent to donate for BOTH non-transplant donation and organ donation? Science Care always encourages life-saving donation prior to body donation to science. You will need to register for both programs separately and let your loved ones know of your wish to donate to both organizations.
For more information about Non-Transplant Organ Donation and Organ and Tissue Donation Visit us at: https://www.sciencecare.com/organ-donation-save-lives
Eating healthy doesn’t mean eating boring. This dish is an easy way to turn grilled vegetables into a satisfying meal, thanks to hearty whole-grain pasta and a quick homemade pesto.
Preheat grill to medium-high. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Combine basil, Parmesan, walnuts, garlic, 1/4 tsp. salt, and 1/8 tsp. pepper in a food processor; pulse until finely chopped. Slowly pour 1/4 cup oil through the feed tube; continue processing until the mixture is smooth. Transfer to a medium bowl and set aside.
Combine Portobello, bell peppers, squash, scallions, and the remaining 2 Tbsp. oil, 1/4 tsp. salt, and 1/8 tsp. pepper in a large bowl; toss to coat.
Oil the grill grates (see Tip). Grill the vegetables until tender and lightly charred, 6 to 8 minutes per side. Remove from the grill and coarsely chop.
Cook pasta according to package directions. Add zucchini "noodles" to the pasta during the last 2 minutes of cooking. Reserve 1/2 cup pasta water before draining. Drain the pasta and zoodles and place in a large bowl.
Whisk 1/4 cup of the reserved pasta water into the pesto. Pour over the pasta and toss to coat, adding more reserved pasta water if needed to loosen the sauce. Add the grilled vegetables and beans; toss to coat well.
To oil grill grates: Rub an oil-soaked paper towel over the grill grates. Use tongs to hold the paper towel (Do not use cooking spray on a hot grill).
Serving Size: 2 cups
Per Serving: 434 calories; protein 12g; carbohydrates 37g; dietary fiber 8g; sugars 8g; fat 29g; saturated fat 4g; cholesterol 4mg; potassium 926mg; sodium 411mg.
The Billboard top 5 songs for February 1972 were:
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