By Samantha Bailey, Registered Dietitian
Heart shaped candies, bouquets of vibrant red roses, fluffy teddy bears, and X’s and O’s are beginning to filling the store aisles, which means Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. But February isn’t just about the “be mine” cards, it’s also recognized as American Heart Month by The American Heart Association to spread awareness about cardiac diseases and prevention. Show your heart some love by following a healthy cardiac lifestyle, especially with all the decadent chocolaty desserts and sweets that will be consumed in the coming weeks!
Vamp Up Your Fruit and Vegetable Routine
Fruits and vegetables have it all from taste to nutrition. They are packed with vitamins, minerals, and fiber and they’re also low in calories, making for the quintessential guilty-free snack. Take charge of your health by including a variety of fruits and vegetables throughout the week and you’re on your way to getting the nutrients you need for a healthy heart. Try these Avocado Sweet Pea Frozen Pops for a new spin on eating fruits and vegetables.
Have a heart-pumping date this Valentine’s Day with some physical activity at the gym, park or at the convenience of your own home. The American Heart Association recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate physical activity or 75 minutes of vigorous physical activity each week to keep your heart healthy. Afterward, stay strong and pump on by rewarding yourself with a Sweet Corn & Tomato Pesto Bruschetta snack made with Libby’s® Whole Kernel Sweet Corn. The combination of fruit, vegetables, and whole wheat baguette are all part of and key to a heart healthy diet.
Put a Cap on Eating Nutrient-Poor Food
With all the chocolate hearts and lollipops, you’re likely not getting the nutrients you need, so it’s recommended to limit your sugary treats. When you and your loved one are settling down for Valentine’s Day dinner, aim for nutrient-rich foods (think: skinless poultry or fish, legumes, and fruits and vegetables). Make it even more romantic by having a candle light dinner at home. Try whipping up this Maple Glazed Turkey Breast with Sesame Green Beans & Carrots to impress your Valentine and keep your heart going.