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Valentine's Day

Boomer Journeys
by Alex Carrier

Be Sweet to Your Valentine’s Heart

heartsFebruary is National Heart Month and includes Valentine’s Day. Now is the perfect time to show the one you love how much you want to be with him or her for a very long time.

Being good and being healthy for your sweetheart are not mutually exclusive. You can celebrate Valentine’s and still support a healthy lifestyle.

Giving candy? Pick dark chocolate which contains heart –healthy antioxidants. Dark chocolates with added fruits or nuts are also good choices but will contain more fats and sugars. Try buying a few gourmet chocolates and pack them in an attractive, reusable container.

Get even healthier and more romantic with real berries, which are full of anti-oxidants, dipped in melted dark chocolate. Defrost and drain frozen (no sugar added) berries, then drizzle a small amount of melted dark chocolate over the top for a romantic, healthy (and delicious) dessert.

If you are planning a romantic dinner, don’t eat - dine. Make the meal an experience of savoring both the food you are eating and each other’s company. Healthy food choices include lower fat but tasty meats like chicken or fish and lots of green vegetables. Heavy meals are not sexy.

heartTake a stroll after dinner or, better yet, go dancing. A little exercise after eating is good for both the digestion and the heart.

Give your sweetheart the gift of relaxation to help reduce heart-damaging stress. While membership in a health club might be good for your loved one’s heart; they also might find it a bit insulting. Instead, consider membership or credit with a certified massage therapist who can ease away every-day stress.

Flowers are also known for their ability to reduce stress. Buy your loved one a nice glass or crystal vase and bring fresh flowers every week or so to create a relaxing and loving environment.

Now it’s time to get down to the truth about the heart and the sexes. Men and women are not created equal.

While both men and women suffer heart disease and heart attacks, they often exhibit different symptoms and, worse yet; women sometimes do not get the care they need. Women, and the men that love them, need to know the signs of heart attack.

A heart attack may start slowly and build. Warning signs might include pain or discomfort in the chest or anywhere in the upper body including back, sides, arm, jaw, head, neck and stomach. Men are more likely to feel these symptoms.

amoreOther symptoms are dizziness or light-headedness, sudden weakness, breathlessness or trouble breathing. A victim may feel nauseous or break into a cold sweat. Women are more likely to feel these symptoms.

Women are also more likely to feel anxious or experience a sense of impending doom. They may become so nauseous they vomit. Their weakness may present as fatigue. Both sexes may experience any or all of these warning signs.

Men involved in stable relationships tend to live longer then men who are not. The same is not true for women.

This difference is usually credited to women getting men to the doctor when needed. Men are not returning the favor.

If a man exhibits heart attack symptoms, most women will demand a trip to the emergency room. Men need to be as insistent when women exhibit the warning signs of a heart attack.

If your valentine experiences heart attack symptoms, get immediate help. If you get to the hospital and it is nothing; be glad. If you get to the hospital and it is a heart attack; be very glad you took action. man and woman

Men must be insistent. Be as firm with her as she would be with you.

Statistics show that women are often misdiagnosed when during heart attacks. Men must act as advocates for the women they love. They may need to be firm in asking medical personnel to perform the same tests on the woman as they would on a man who might be having a heart attack.

Be heart-healthy and happy this Valentine’s Day. It may help you celebrate with your loved one for many more days to come.

Boomer Journeys and other articles by Alex Carrier in the
Greene County Record

Valentine's Day Index

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