Healthy Heart Hints

I'm sure you've read that the fat around our bellies is hard on our hearts. So if you've gained a few pounds over the years, it's a good idea to get it off for better heart health.

Here are a few tips.

1. Eat more vegetables

This is the best time of year for fresh fruits and vegetables. I've started going to our local farmers' market, and we're trying to grow tomatoes, peppers and cantaloupe.

2. Eat on smaller plates
Less food looks like more if you serve it on a smaller plate.

I've recently inherited some antique dishes. It's amazing how much smaller the glasses, cups and plates are.

3. Increase your protein

We need protein to help prevent bone and muscle loss.

4. Eat less sodium

My oldest son was born with a heart murmur. His pediatric cardiologist told me not to salt his food and he'd never acquire a taste for too much salt.
Many processed foods have high amounts of sodium. Too much salt may increase your blood pressure and leave a feeling of bloatedness.

5. Don't cut out all treats

If you deprive yourself of your favorite treat, you'll feel deprived and it'll be harder to stick to your healthy eating habits.

6. Don't forget to exercise.

I know it's hot outside, but try to get out and find something you enjoy. Dust off your bike or go for an invigorating walk.

I hope you enjoy the rest of your summer!