Exercise and Nutrition Recommendations from the American Heart Association

Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States of America. Therefore, it is of utmost importance that all of us take the time to speak out about healthy habits, from physical activity to educating about proper nutritional guides to live by.
According to the American Heart Association, the minimum amount of exercise recommended to Americans is 150 minutes per week. Realistically, this is not too hard to achieve. With only 30 minutes each work day, you will be able to fill those 150 minutes for the week, all while leaving the weekend as “rest days.” It is hard to keep yourself accountable for your progress though, especially after a long, hard day at work. There’s an answer to that as well though!
Next time you are alongside friends, coworkers, or a significant other, ask them to work out with you for a half hour every day. This may be difficult to bring up, and most people will likely deny the invitation, but finding a workout partner is crucial to building a healthy exercise habit. If all else fails and you find yourself being your own exercise partner, ask yourself every single day, “did I do something good for my heart today?” Really think about this question because it will motivate you to go for a jog, do some Pilates, yoga, or even a full workout! If 30 minutes seems too difficult to start out with, set a realistic goal for the day and achieve it, whether it be 10, 15, or 20 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise. Anything helps!
With all that said, exercise is not the only answer to preventing heart disease. According to the American Heart Association, healthy living starts with healthy food choices. Before you even change your diet from foods you love to something you haven’t given a chance, be it a certain vegetable or incorporating fruit into the diet, at least lower your portion size per meal. Once you have mastered your cravings and can go through the day with 3 to 4 meals consisting between 700 and 900 calories each, you are ready to switch it up! In addition, the American Heart Association recommends supplementing meals with fruit filled smoothie snacks to curb cravings, boost your energy throughout the day, and kickstart your metabolism to begin burning calories after each meal!