Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S. and worldwide, responsible for about one out of every three deaths in the U.S., according to data from the American Heart Association. Since February is Heart Health Month, there’s no better time than right now to take a few simple actions aimed at preventing heart disease and stroke. The good news: These prevention activities are easy to incorporate into your daily routine, and they’re especially ideal for Floridians.
Be more active. When it comes to beautiful outdoor areas, Florida can’t be beat. Instead of sitting around watching TV all weekend, set aside some time to explore some new (or familiar) spots on foot, by bike or by kayak or canoe. If you’re normally sedentary, start slowly and talk to your doctor first to avoid overexerting yourself. If forays into the great outdoors don’t appeal to you, try taking a half-hour walk after dinner or during your lunch break. Even 30 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise five days a week can make a big difference in heart health. The USDA SuperTracker program offers an easy way to track your physical activity and get custom advice to help you improve your health.
Eat more fresh fruits and veggies. Again, Floridians have it made. Because fresh produce is so widely available, adding a salad before a meal or snacking on fresh fruit during the day is an easy – and affordable – way to improve your diet, lower your fat intake and increase your fiber. Plus, it’s a great way to shed some extra pounds, especially when combined with an increase in physical activity. Not sure where to start? The Florida Department of Agriculture has a big recipe database to whet your appetite.
Learn to manage stress. Easier said than done? Maybe, and not everyone has time for yoga or meditation classes. But guess what? Even taking one simple action like learning a few breathing exercises can make a big difference – plus, breathing exercises can be done anywhere, and it only takes about 10 minutes to get the benefits. Here are six breathing exercises to try.
Make sure you have the right life and health insurance. None of us can predict the future, and having adequate insurance is one way to reduce stress and enjoy greater peace of mind, not to mention making sure you have the coverage you need if you do have heart health issues. Call Atlantic-Pacific Insurance Agency today at 800-538-0487 for a quick policy review to make sure you have the right coverage for you and for your family members.
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