February is dominated by roses, chocolate, wine, pink hearts, and other Valentine’s Day decorations and treats. But in this month of love, there is more to focus on than paper hearts because it is American Heart Health Month. Take some time this month to do something good for your heart and encourage others to do the same.

The Beginning of American Heart Health Month

February was proclaimed American Heart Health Month by Lyndon B. Johnson in 1964. As a heart attack survivor, he was aware of the importance of protecting the heart against the dangers of cardiovascular disease. In his proclamation, he urged Americans to pay attention to the problem and support programs that work toward solutions.

Ways to Participate

Celebrate American Heart Health Month by taking care of your heart and supporting programs aimed at improving heart health. Here are a few ideas to get started:

Check out Go Red for Women. Their National Wear Red Day is designed to raise awareness about the risks of heart disease for women. Many people think that heart disease usually affects men, but it also strikes women and is the #1 killer of women in America. Go Red is working to change that fact by educating the public and encouraging women to make heart-healthy changes.
Support heart-healthy legislation, like those that ban smoking in healthcare facilities. Cigarette smoke is a major detriment to a healthy heart, so eliminating smoking is a way to improve health and well-being. Non-smoking hospitals that only hire non-smoking professionals are showing up around the country as a response.

Exercise regularly. According to the American Heart Association, 30 minutes of activity that gets your heart pumping each day helps keep your heart healthy. So go for a brisk walk, do some work around the house, take a swim, or perform some other form of vigorous activity to get your heart beating.

Make healthy food choices. Eating at home and preparing your own food is a great way to control what you are consuming. Try to follow the MyPlate.gov guidelines as frequently as possible and limit intake of fat, sodium, and sugar.

American Heart Health Month is a perfect opportunity to reflect on the health of your heart and make a positive change for the better. Working for a professional company like Therapia is a great way to network with others and support heart-healthy habits together.