It’s the time of year where heart-shaped boxes are EVERYWHERE! Fitting, since it’s also National Heart Month. What better time to care for our own hearts?
Did you know heart disease is the leading cause of death for adults in the United States? In fact, in the year 2020, 1 in 5 deaths was attributed to heart disease (CDC). And heart disease does not discriminate based on age – younger adults are increasingly at risk of developing heart disease earlier in life as rates of obesity and high blood pressure climb. The good news is there are actions we can take every day to reduce our risk of heart disease.
Did you know sitting for long periods of time has been linked to shorter life spans? Use this as your excuse to take micro-breaks & move your body!
- Set a timer to stand up and stretch for 5 minutes each hour.
- On a break? Incorporate a walk into your lunch hour. (Bonus points for getting outside for fresh air & vitamin D – but wear sunscreen!)
- Is your mind feeling as sedentary as your body? Turn that stretch break into a 10-minute dance party! Moving to your favorite jams not only gets the blood pumping, it resets your mind, too!
Did you know? Ergonomic Coaching is a great tool to implement in your work teams to encourage micro-breaks, stretching, and postural changes.
Laughing has been shown to lower stress hormones, decrease inflammation in our arteries, and raise good cholesterol (Mayo Clinic). This is your sign to load up your Netflix queue full of whatever gets you rolling on the floor laughing.
Your furry co-workers, it turns out, aren’t just good for moral support. Researchers have also found a positive correlation between having pets and improved heart & lung function! If that isn’t a reason to break out the dog biscuits (or cat nip) and celebrate, I don’t know what is.
You knew this one was coming… Eating a diet rich in fiber is key to heart health. But did you know less than 3% of Americans are eating their recommended daily dose of 25-30 grams of fiber? In fact, the American Society of Nutrition found that most are only reaching 15 grams. Fiber plays a huge role in supporting digestion. It also binds to and removes excess cholesterol from your body. Incorporate more fiber-rich foods into your daily meals: whole wheat, raspberries, pears, apples, peas, beans, oats, barley, avocados & bananas all pack a punch.
Did you know? Employer wellness professionals like UHS’ Industrial Specialists can be a great resource for nutrition assistance, too!
Interested in incorporating heart-healthy initiatives into your employee wellness programs? Let’s talk! Reach out to Inquiries@unifyhs.com.