Healthy Hearts at Home & At School
February is American Heart Month (and Valentine’s Day!) so it’s a great time to focus on heart health. There are many simple ways to keep your heart healthy this month and all year long! Show your heart some love by trying out the ideas below with students, friends, or family.
Focus on Heart-Healthy Foods
Many foods have been shown to improve heart health. Eating these foods on a regular basis can help to keep your heart strong throughout your lifetime. Adding more of these foods to your diet can help protect your heart:
- Whole Grains
- Fruits and Vegetables
For a healthy meal everyone will love, try a build-your-own oatmeal bar for breakfast or a build-your-own burrito bar for lunch or dinner using heart-healthy ingredients.
- Low-sugar (under 6 grams per dry ounce) oatmeal
- Nuts, such as almonds or walnuts
- Fruit, such as strawberries, blueberries and banana slices
- Spices, such as cinnamon or nutmeg
- Whole wheat tortillas
- Brown rice or quinoa
- Black beans and/or kidney beans
- Low-fat cheese
Hungry for more? Check out these ideas for quick and healthy breakfasts and lunches.
Get Your Heart Rate Up
Our hearts need exercise to stay strong and healthy. Children should get at least 60 minutes of physical activity each day. Here are some easy ways to get physically active that people of all ages will enjoy:
- Turn off the television and go on a walk after dinner
- Turn the music on and have a dance-off
- Play tag or hide-and-seek
- Use the playground at a nearby park or local school
- Try some quick physical activity breaks before dinner or during the commercials of your favorite television program
Share the Love
Along with keeping your heart healthy with nutritious foods and physical activity, it’s important to express feelings and spend time with others to protect your emotional health. Try these simple activities to warm your heart:
- Eat dinner with others and share updates from your day/week
- Read your favorite book or read to someone else
- Call a friend to see how they’re doing
- Journal about things you are grateful for
- Cuddle with a pet
We “Heart” Healthy Celebrations!
- Families, caregivers and school staff can also support heart health during Valentine’s Day celebrations. Plan your healthy Valentine’s Day party now or try one of these easy tips:
- Enjoy heart-healthy treats like these Apple of My Eye Grahams or hummus with veggies
- Have a dance party to themed songs such as “Give Your Heart a Break” by Demi Lovato and “Heartbeat Song” by Kelly Clarkson
- Craft hand-written valentines for loved ones
- Share healthy celebration success stories with the community
- For more ideas, see Celebrations that Support Child Health
Through Kohl’s commitment to family health and wellness, you and your family can find more Eating Healthy at Home tools, tips, and ideas here.