Whether you plan to celebrate on your own or with someone special, use these tips to give a gift of health to you or someone you love on Valentine’s Day and all year long. <!–split–>
- Make A Date With Your Heart! February is American Heart Month, and Valentine’s Day is a great time to start taking steps to be heart-healthy. Prevent and control high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes.
- Avoid smoking and secondhand smoke. Limit alcohol use.
- Maintain a healthy weight. Be active. Eat healthy.
- Consider making a healthy meal for Valentine’s Day. Serve food lower in salt and fat content, provide more fruits and vegetables, and make less sugary sweets for an overall healthy Valentine’s Day.
SPREAD LOVE, NOT GERMS
- Protect yourself from the cold and flu.
- Wash hands often.
- Avoid close contact when you or someone you know is sick.
- Get your flu vaccine.
BE PREPARED FOR TRAVEL
- If you are going on a romantic getaway, be prepared.
- Are vaccinations required?
- Are there special items such as sunscreen or insect repellent that you will need?
- If you take medications, do you have enough for the trip?
- If you’re going on a cruise, learn the sanitation inspection scores for specific ships. Know what’s happening en route or at your travel destination.
GO EASY ON THE BUBBLY
- If you drink alcohol, do so only in moderation. Excessive alcohol use has immediate effects that increase the risk of many harmful health conditions. It is also the third leading cause of preventable death. Don’t drink and drive or let others drink and drive. Women who are pregnant or trying to become pregnant should not drink
- Gear up.Are you considering a new, potentially risky, or unsafe activity? Be sure to use appropriate safety gear, including seat belts, life vests, and helmets to help prevent injury.
- Watch the sparks.If you decide to cook a romantic dinner, light some candles, or have a cozy fire, don’t leave them unattended.
- Be aware.Women are more likely to be victims of sexual violence, including intimate partner violence, than men. Risk factors such as drinking alcohol and using drugs are associated with a greater likelihood of violence.
- Consider that your valentine may have allergies, asthma, diabetes, or other health conditions. You can be sensitive to your valentine by finding out if certain foods, flowers, pets, stuffed animals, or anything else might affect his or her health.
For more information go to: http://www.cdc.gov/family/valentine/
Your Parish Nurse, Kara