Happy Month of Hearts, Chocolate, Dinner, Flowers and Wine!
Ah yes February the month of love and forgotten New Year’s resolutions! It is not too late to get back on track. February is designated as Heart Health month by the American Heart Association. Lyndon B Johnson proclaimed February 1964 as the first American Heart Health month. Heart disease and stroke are the leading cause of death with more than 17.3 million deaths worldwide. On average someone dies every 40 seconds of cardiovascular disease.
All is not lost in this month of love! It is important that we love ourselves first and take care of ourselves in as many ways as we can. Here’s the good news:
Eat the Chocolate!
Our heart-shaped boxes filled with fabulous chocolate arrive from our loved one. Mother used to say a moment on the lips a lifetime on the hips. Dark chocolate with a cocoa content of 70 to 80% has been shown to have some health benefits.
Research shows that dark chocolate may lower the risk cardiovascular disease by lowering blood pressure, raising your HDL (your good cholesterol) and protects against LDL (your bad cholesterol). Dark chocolate is also a powerful source of antioxidants.
Enjoy your box of good high-quality dark chocolate. All things in moderation -perhaps one piece a day for the entire month and consider yourself doing something good for your health.
Enjoy the Meal!
There are many fabulous local restaurants offering special Valentine’s Day meals for you and your amore. Each restaurant maybe better than the next- I say try them all! Being in New England we never can tell what the weather will bring us for Valentine’s Day. Some Valentines have been quite warm out and very amenable to being dressed up and enjoying fine dining. Valentines could also bring a heavy snow. If going out to one of the wonderful local restaurants is not really an option for you, or if you prefer to have a romantic evening at home, it doesn’t mean that you have to cook. There are many local places that will deliver.
Smell the Flowers!
According to Teleflora.com those Valentine’s bouquets have many beneficial effects on us as well. Flowers improve emotional health and gives your mood a boost-for both the giver and receiver. Simply looking at plants and flowers can help you feel more relaxed and a little less stressed out-perfect when Valentine’s falls on a work day. Flowers also help with memory and concentration-what a nice way to reminisce about your relationship together!
Sip the Wine!
A glass of red wine with dinner is good for your heart too! Scientists believe it may be the resveratrol in red wine that has beneficial antioxidants. According to Prevention.com the best wines are Pinot Noir, Madirans, Cabernet, Shiraz and Merlot. Which brand is best remains up for debate. Sample several at one of the local Rhode Island vineyards or a local liquor store. Enjoy your glass of wine with your Valentine! (Call Uber or Lyft to get you home- don’t drink and drive).