Take Your Leap Day and Reduce Stress to Improve Heart Health

What will you do with your extra day? I HIGHLY recommend taking it for yourself and scheduling some self-care activities. Take this one for yourself.  You have a whole extra 1440 minutes, after all! And that stress reduction is great for your heart health!

It doesn’t have to be a spa day (but can be!); just do activities that you find relaxing, calming, or inspiring. The great thing about self-care is that it is entirely up to YOU. There are no wrong answers here. The important thing is to do something for the JOY of it than makes you truly feel good.

Doing joyful activities regularly is one of the best ways to cope with and reduce stress. Our minds and our bodies are connected and stress manifests physically in the body -it does so subtly, at first. It creeps in, so we don’t always notice it or have blatant symptoms right away, but it’s there. And our heart is susceptible to the effects of long term, or chronic, stress.

Why is this relevant? Well, February is national heart health month. But, in all honesty, we should prioritize our heart health all year long. It works hard, nonstop, to keeps everything running smoothly, pumping blood, nutrients, and oxygen to every corner of your body, so we should give it the love and attention it deserves.

roasted red pepper and walnut heart healthy dip spread

Yes, eating well and exercise are both excellent ways to show your heart some love, and they are certainly both important! But don’t forget about that third element in the heart health trifecta: stress. So next time you’re thinking about what you can do to help take care of your heart, doing nothing can actually be a solution! And by doing nothing, I mean relaxing, breathing, calming your nervous system.

So, how are you going to show yourself, and your heart, some love today? Maybe get outside, go somewhere you can be by water, enjoy a food or beverage, or create something – cook, paint, sew, do a puzzle. Do something you ENJOY. And allow yourself to savor the experience. And I encourage you not just to do it this once, but make it a regular thing. Your heart, and mind, will thank you.

If trying on some new culinary skills is your jam, check out this delightful Roasted Red Pepper and Walnut Dip – great for your heart with antioxidants from the peppers and pomegranate juice, healthy fats, fiber, and protein from the walnuts. It is great as a dip, salad dressing, sandwich or wrap spread, over rice, pasta, or barley!

If you’re interested in going a little deeper and learning how to make lifestyle changes to support your health in the long run, schedule a free chat with me! Our initial consultation is always on the house so you can get to know me and how I can help you with zero risk, Pick out a date and time here: https://tasteandthrive.com/home/schedule/

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