Living Life to the Fullest Does Your Heart Good

Living a heart-healthy lifestyle may not be as difficult as you think. In fact, all you need to do is look around and take advantage of all of the good things life has to offer. In celebration of National Heart Month in February, Village at Proprietors Green is placing emphasis on ways to stay heart healthy.

The food we eat is a prime example. Some of the most appetizing culinary options not only tantalize your taste buds, but also provide vital vitamins and nutrients, keep weight and blood pressure in check, and help prevent heart disease. Picture a colorful medley of freshly picked vegetables, sweet and succulent fruits, and the catch of the day grilled or broiled to perfection. Or, if you prefer meat, chicken, turkey and yes, even lean red meats are good options.

Recent research shows that eating lean (without much fat) beef can actually lower bad cholesterol in the blood, which is good for your heart. Sure, all of us should limit fried fare, prepackaged foods, and anything that says saturated fat or trans fat, but with so many tastier options, you’re not too likely to miss them. Village at Proprietors Green is known for its excellent meal selections, with chef-prepared cuisine made with your health in mind.

How about a cocktail before dinner or when socializing with friends? The heart-healthy benefits of red wine have been touted for quite some time. Now researchers are reporting that other alcoholic beverages (consumed in moderation) seem to hold the same benefits. So whether your beverage of choice is red wine, white wine, beer, or a cocktail, most people can go ahead and enjoy a drink. Of equal importance, however, is the fine line between doing the heart good and contributing to other health issues. Studies have shown that women should limit alcohol to no more than one drink a day, and the limit for men is two. As always, because individual health circumstances may dictate otherwise and because some medications react with alcohol, checking in with your personal physician about any potential restrictions is always a good idea.

Another example of how all of us can reap heart-healthy benefits by simply enjoying life relates to what we do during the day. The official recommendation of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services of at least 150 minutes of moderate activity each week may sound daunting, bringing to mind visions of pounding out miles on a treadmill or a stationary bike.

If, however, your preference is to enjoy the company of friends, pursue new interests, or stay engaged in your favorite hobbies, you are likely to achieve, and perhaps surpass, the recommended guidelines without giving it much thought. Village at Proprietors Green offers many options for staying physically active. Residents may enjoy the fitness center or a fitness class. Our community’s full-time activities director arranges for ballroom dancing classes, Wii bowling and Zumba. Additionally, Village at Proprietors Green offers onsite physical therapy.

If you do need to step it up a bit, putting your focus on having more fun rather than getting more exercise is likely to achieve the desired result—getting your body moving on a regular enough basis to maintain, and even improve, heart health. One recent study found that a five-minute walk every hour may reverse damage to arteries caused by sitting for long periods.

When weather permits, residents at Village at Proprietors Green can be seen walking on the sidewalks with their friends around the senior living community. Walking with others can motivate you to keep moving, inspire you to try other activities, and result in health benefits such as lower cholesterol, lower blood pressure and a healthy weight—all of which lower your risk of heart attack, stroke, diabetes and other health issues.

Living a lifestyle that makes your heart happy is the key to keeping your heart healthy. Take advantage of every opportunity to enjoy life to the fullest and you will be doing your heart good.