True Love All Starts With A Healthy Heart
Since it began in 496, Valentine’s Day has evolved beyond recognition. Who would have thought that this heart-focused tradition stems from the Roman festival of Springtime, Lupercalia, and takes its name from the lovestruck priest, St Valentine of Rome, beheaded on February 14th, 269 for marrying Christian soldiers against the will of the church.
It’s only with the turn of the 21st century that heart health is impacted by the customs of Valentine’s Day. No longer will a handwritten card, rose petals on the bedsheets and Frank Sinatra crooning in the background make the cut. With a richer array of Valentine’s options than ever before, lovers shy away from this classic setup in favour of Belgian chocolates, a bottle of Merlot and a table for two at the local Italian.
Therefore, it’s evident that keeping a healthy heart on Valentine’s Day is by no means an easy task. In regard to this lifestyle transition, here are four tips for transforming cardiovascular health this February.
Take your breath away
While panting and puffing don’t look incredibly healthy, exercise works wonders for the cardiovascular system. As well as accentuating muscles, burning fat and developing stamina, exercise is a great tool for the fight against heart disease. Cardiovascular diseases are on the rise and are the planet’s leading cause of premature death. Common influencers of these conditions are obesity and a lethargic lifestyle. It’s important to recognise that sitting in front of the television for more than four hours daily has the potential to increase the risk of heart disease by as much as eighty per cent! However, this doesn’t mean that an active lifestyle has to be a chore. A run with the dog or a romantic stroll with a partner is usually sufficient and, if maintained throughout the year, forms a significant step towards improving cardiovascular health.
Hugs & kisses
While intimacy benefits the dynamics of a relationship, it also promotes fantastic cardiovascular health. A study published by the American Journal of Cardiology discovered that men who engaged in sex at least twice a week were half as likely to die from heart disease than those who were sexually active once a month. Hormones play a huge part in reducing the risk of heart disease and sexual activity also reduces the stress hormones that constrict blood vessels and speed up heart rate, raising the risk of a heart attack.
Although historically associated as the acronym for Lots of Love (quite relevant here), it’s now mostly known for laugh out loud and February 14 is nothing without laughter. Unlike typical speech, laughter is a vocalised emotion with the power to form empathetic bonds and influence someone’s emotive state. While laughter a fantastic way to woo a valentine, it’s also a great tool to improve cardiovascular health. Laughter alone can dilate blood vessels by 22 per cent, reducing blood pressure, strains on the heart and the likelihood of a heart attack. It’s no joke that laughter is an incredible medicine.
A hearty meal
While Valentine’s day focuses on romance and heart-shaped gifts, very little emphasis is placed upon the heart itself. Everyone knows that food and romance have an intrinsic connection, but few recognise the specific foods that are beneficial to cardiovascular health. Whether staging a romantic dinner at home or dining out, such ingredients are excellent additions to any Valentine’s menu. Check out the best performing ingredients and their benefits to cardiovascular health below.
- Oatmeal – High in omega-3 fatty acids, folate and potassium can lower cholesterol levels
- Salmon – Rich in omega-3 fatty acids can reduce blood pressure and the likelihood of clotting
- Blueberries, Raspberries, Strawberries – anti-inflammatory properties can reduce the risk of heart disease
- Avocado – promotes the absorption of beta-carotene and lycopene can improve the heart’s condition
- Oranges – contains pectin and potassium can support blood pressure control
For those less partial to these specific ingredients, there is another dietary option with the capability to transform cardiovascular health.
CholBiome® is a unique food supplement that combines three natural, science-backed ingredients to help maintain healthy levels of cholesterol. A holistic alternative to traditional pharmaceutical treatments, this innovative product helps to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol to promote overall heart wellness.
CholBiome combines three targeted ingredients, Monacolin K from red yeast rice, Vitamin B3 (niacin) and Lactobacillus plantarum LPLDL® to deliver tangible health benefits. Rigorous independent studied have shown LPLDL to lower cholesterol by up to 36.7 per cent and increase HDL cholesterol by up to 4.5 per cent.
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Armed with extensive knowledge of heart health, there is no excuse for making unhealthy choices this Valentine’s Day. Aside from developing romantic connections and making loved ones smile, February 14 is a time to be thankful; life is a direct result of a functioning heart and a valuable gift that everyone is lucky to behold.For more information on the CholBiome range and other strategies to strengthen the heart this Valentine’s Day, visit us on social media or read our Health & Wellness blogs!