Thursday, February 6, 2014

Love Yourself-Go Red!

 "Guard your heart above all else,  for it determines the course of your life."  Proverbs 4:23

February 14th has always been considered the day of love.  It's a great day to celebrate our love for others and I think it is an excellent time also to think about taking care of ourselves (self-love).  Do you care enough for yourself that you make healthy choices in diet, exercise, and sleep?  Are you controlling your stress levels as much as possible? 

When we think of love we think of St. Valentine.  The origin of St. Valentine, and how many St. Valentines there were, remains a mystery. One opinion is that he was a Roman martyred for refusing to give up his Christian faith. Other historians hold that St. Valentine was a temple priest jailed for defiance during the reign of Claudius. Whoever he was, Valentine really existed because archaeologists have unearthed a Roman catacomb and an ancient church dedicated to Saint Valentine. In 496 AD Pope Gelasius marked February 14th as a celebration in honor of his martyrdom.  This does not mean that you need to be a martyr when it comes to taking care of #1-YOU!

Dark, richly colored veggies are the best for you! 

Today we also call February "Go Red" month and this is for a very good reason.  Bringing attention to the epidemic of heart disease in women is a very important issue.  Below are some statistics that may startle you.  If you are not taking care of your heart maybe they will wake you up!
  • Heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women, and is more deadly than all forms of cancer combined.
  • Heart disease causes 1 in 3 women’s deaths each year, killing approximately one woman every minute.
  • An estimated 43 million women in the U.S. are affected by heart disease.
  • Ninety percent of women have one or more risk factors for developing heart disease.
  • Since 1984, more women than men have died each year from heart disease.
  • The symptoms of heart disease can be different in women and men, and are often misunderstood.
  • While 1 in 31 American women dies from breast cancer each year, 1 in 3 dies of heart disease.
  • Only 1 in 5 American women believe that heart disease is her greatest health threat.
  • Women comprise only 24 percent of participants in all heart-related studies.
Exercise and diet are the two main ways that you can control your heart health.  If heart disease runs in your family you are not destined to follow the same course.  If you've read my past writings you will know that I am a firm believer in the "genes of nature verses the genes of nurture" way of living.  Your DNA only determines 30% of your health.  The rest is up to you.  Make sure that you also maintain a healthy weight and are on a regular exercise program.  Do something that raises your heart rate to 80% of the recommended maximum for your age at least four days a week. To find out how to calculate yours you can Click here  Do not smoke!  Smoking is responsible for many different cancers and it also contributes to a higher incidence of heart disease for people who use tobacco.  Eat a diet that consists mainly of dark, leafy, organic, locally grown fruits and vegetables.  When possible, grow your own.  Eat minimal amounts of meat and when you do make sure that it is humanely killed, chemical and hormone-free.  The best way is to raise your own but that's not always possible.  Remember that societies that live the longest, healthiest lives only eat meat on special occasions and they grow and consume their own fruits and vegetables.   If you can't grow your own produce then make sure you shop at organically certified farmer's markets whenever possible.

You decide what to fill your plate and your heart with.

 If you are not eating foods in the ways mentioned above then you are not only lacking in vitamins and minerals but you are ingesting chemicals and other things that are causing you harm.  In this case there are some great nutritional supplements that you can add to your daily routine.  I look at high-quality supplements as "insurance."  In most people these supplements can help with heart-health and keep you from needing blood-thinning medicines as you age.  *If you are already taking medicines of any kind please check with your medical doctor before you decide to take nutritional supplements.   Be aware that many medical doctors are either not trained in the benefits of natural remedies or they have been educated by the drug companies and thus prescribe only drugs.
For some really great supplements that are some of the highest quality, and have"truth in labeling" you can click here.  Da Vinci Labs has one of the best reputations around and they are running some specials for women's heart healthy month.  Once you enter the site you can search to see what you may need.
Check-out my recipes page on this website for a few recipes.  Or email me for more information and help.

Last but not least, please get certified in CPR (Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation)  You may just save someone's life.

"Go Red" and love yourself this Valentine's Day!

*Join me for The Call on February 15th at 6pm Pacific time.  Dial 530-881-1300 and key-in 642848#  We will summarize our discussion on goal setting and go on to discuss heart health.  "See" you then!