I don’t know about you, but I’d like to make every day of my life a happy one. Joy makes life more enjoyable, and our health affects our ability to feel that joy. Think about it. When you have a headache, a cold, or the flu, it’s more difficult to enjoy the positive and all too easy to focus on the negative. And we’re just talking about temporary health issues, not life-altering disease.
Heart disease is a major one in the U.S. At least 600,000 people die from it each year. In fact, it’s the leading cause of death for both women and men. A general term encompassing several different conditions, heart disease includes coronary artery disease and cardiovascular disease. Both of these can cause heart attack and stroke—costing the U.S. more than $312 billion every year in doctor and hospital visits, medications and lost productivity.
Scary statistics, I know. I learned them when I recently read that February is American Heart Month. And because I want the fans of Zu-Li Designs to live the longest, healthiest and happiest lives possible, I decided to share a few of the tips I found to take care of your heart.
- Cut back on sodium. Most of us consume 3,400 milligrams of sodium a day when we should only eat 1,500 milligrams. This increases our risk of high blood pressure.
- Increase physical activity. Help your heart, energize your body and quiet your mind with exercise. Aim for 150 minutes per week.
- Aim for normal blood pressure. About 67 million adults in the U.S. have high blood pressure. Taking steps to lower it (like reducing sodium and exercising more), will greatly reduce your risk of heart disease.
- Don’t smoke. HIV, illegal drugs, alcohol, cars and violence cause a lot of deaths every year. Tobacco causes even more. Help your heart and quit for good. If you’re looking for a way to quit without the scary side effects, try Hypnotherapy.
Here’s to your healthy, happy heart! Take care!
Peace & Love,
American writer Richard Bach once said, “True love stories never have endings.” It’s an agreeable thought. What could be more wonderful than loving someone for an eternity? A basketful of kittens would be nice. A pair of the latest Louboutin’s would be divine. A calorie-free slice of decadent dark chocolate cake would be magical. But nothing trumps true love.
Throughout the world, many couples celebrate this love on February 14, also known as Saint Valentine’s Day. Some exchange cards, flowers, candy and jewelry. Others go out for a nice dinner together. Material matters aside, they all put aside day-to-day worries and spend time—if only an hour or two—focusing on each other. They should do even more.
Wouldn’t it be better to show those we love how much we care more often? A 2011 survey conducted by popular dating website Match.com found that 18 percent of respondents had “experienced feelings of romantic love lasting for 10 years or more.” I believe that number could be much higher if we all took a little time to appreciate and celebrate our special someone every day of the year.
It’s actually pretty easy! Consider these simple suggestions to make every day Valentine’s Day.
- Think about your relationship. Make a mental list of everything you value about your loved one, your partnership and your life together. Review it daily.
- Make time to listen. Of course, you want to watch last week’s episode of The Walking Dead on the DVR—we all do. But your relationship is more important than finding out what crazy thing The Governor is going to do next. Make dinner conversation with your partner a priority and enjoy the show later.
- Fill a need. Loving gifts don’t have to be “special” things. Even filling your loved one’s car with gas can show how much you care.
- Do someone else’s chore. Take out the garbage, run a load of laundry, fill the dishwasher (the right way). Give your partner the gift of free time—even it’s just a few minutes.
I’d love to hear your tips for making every day special for your loved ones, so please share them in the comments.
Happy Valentine’s Day!