Healthy Fontana E-Newsletter: Volume 2, Issue 2: Heart Health Month

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February 2021  |  Volume 2, Issue 2

Love your heart by being heart healthy this month!

Since the mid-1960s, February has been designated as 'American Heart Month' signifying the importance of taking care of one's heart. The first American Heart Month was recognized in 1964 after President Lyndon B. Johnson suffered a heart attack.


Graphic of heart with 'American Heart Month' and tips on how to keep your heart healthy

Heart disease continues to be the greatest health threat to Americans and is still the leading cause of death worldwide.

Heart disease continues to be the number one killer of Americans and is still the leading cause of death worldwide. The combination of heart disease and stroke accounts for over 2,000 deaths a day. And, more than ever, younger people are being diagnosed with heart disease. Although many people are aware of the dangers of not taking care of their heart, over 80% are not motivated to take the steps to prevent heart attacks.

Heart disease kills more people than all forms of cancer combined.

Heart disease is often preventable, if the right steps are taken. Healthy lifestyles that include choices like not smoking, maintaining a healthy weight, controlling blood sugar and cholesterol, and being physically active regularly can help prevent heart disease.

The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute says we need to "make heart health a regular part of your self-care routine" because people with poor cardiovascular health are also at increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19.

There are steps we can all take towards reaching better heart health. Studies show that heart health can benefit from having close positive relationships with others. So, create a support group and make a plan on how you can take care of your heart together. Here are some steps to include in your heart-healthy plan:

  • Increase physical activity by joining a virtual fitness class with a friend or join Healthy Fontana's FREE walking program: Fontana Walks!
  • Eat a heart-healthy diet that consists of plenty of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains and limit saturated fat, sodium, and sugar.
  • Get your rest and limit stress. Adults should get at least 7 hours of sleep a night. Using meditation and being more active during the day can help you reduce stress and sleep better.
  • Quit smoking. Smoking and vaping can damage the heart. Seek the support of friends and family if you have trouble quitting on your own. 

You can help raise awareness of heart disease by wearing red on the first Friday of the month and sharing this newsletter with your loved ones.

Sources:

American Heart Association

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute


February is National Children's           Dental Health Month

cartoon of kids waiting to get water to drink

In addition to heart health, February recognizes the importance of oral health, especially early on. February is National Children's Dental Health Month and this year's theme is "Water, Nature's Drink!"

"Attitudes and habits established at an early age are critical in maintaining good oral health throughout life."

Tooth decay is one of the most common chronic diseases in children though much can be done to prevent cavities. Children who have poor oral health may miss school, not to mention untreated cavities can cause terrible pain and lead to infection.

So, what can be done to make sure children's teeth stay healthy?

Make sure children are brushing their teeth twice a day and offer more vegetables and fruits and less sugary drinks and foods. Diet is important for strong and healthy teeth. Include foods high in calcium such as yogurt, broccoli, and milk. And, don't forget regular visits to the dentist.

Sources: American Dental Association | CDC

Heart healthy fresh veggie pizza

image of fresh veggie pizza

Ingredients

1/4 cup (2 oz) reduced-fat cream cheese, softened

1/3 cup low-fat plain yogurt

1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon basil or cumin

1/4 teaspoon oregano

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

4 whole-wheat English muffins

1 1/2 cups finely chopped or grated vegetables (try a combination of broccoli, cauliflower, carrot, green pepper, and bell pepper)

2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese (optional)

 

Directions

1. Wash hands with soap and water.

2. In a small bowl, stir cream cheese until smooth. Stir in yogurt and seasonings. Refrigerate while preparing muffins and vegetables.

3. Toast English muffin halves. Spread 1 tablespoon of sauce on each half.

4. Place about 3 tablespoons of vegetables on each muffin half. Shake or sprinkle about 1/2 teaspoon cheese over each muffin half, if desired.

Prep time: 10-15 minutes

Source: foodhero.org

heart image made up of colorful fruits and vegetables

Try these other heart healthy ideas all month long

  • Omelet made with egg whites or egg substitute
  • Whole-grain cereal with fresh fruit
  • Skinless poultry or fish with pasta and vegetables
  • Water with lemon

Mark your calendars for these upcoming events!

  • 2/5/21: Go red! Wear red in observance of heart health
  • 2/14/21: Valentine's and National Donor Day
  • 2/15/21: President's Day - Community Services Department closed in observance
  • 2/20/21: Virtual Fontana Walks! event*

* For more information and to register, visit fontanawalks.org.

* Your pictures/videos can be featured on the program webpage and social media!