Love is in the air! In addition to Valentine’s Day, February ushers in an emphasis on the heart with American Heart Month. This month is a great time to raise awareness of heart health and encourage healthier habits so that we can all live healthy and happy lives.
To help prevent heart disease, it’s important to make self-care a priority, such as exercising regularly, eating nutritious foods, and managing stress. You could try a new type of exercise to get your heart pumping (stretching counts!) or even incorporate some heart-healthy foods into your diet. Additionally, it’s helpful to show your heart some extra love this month by getting regular checkups and monitoring your blood pressure — maybe more than you usually would. Part of maintaining a healthy heart is creating habits that will last all year long, and now is as good a time as any to kickstart those healthy habits!
Taking care of your heart is crucial. Unfortunately, heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, causing 1 out of every 4 deaths. Knowing what the symptoms of heart disease are earlier on can help you prioritize it and take the appropriate actions to stay healthy — whether it’s stopping an unhealthy habit like smoking, knowing which foods to start eating, or discussing other options with your healthcare provider. The sooner you’re aware — the better.
However, without the proper resources or knowledge, it can be challenging to find a feasible path to maintain your health. Below are just a handful of organizations and nonprofits that are helping to promote heart health, raising awareness of heart disease, educating the public on the risk factors, and even offering unique programs for children living with heart disease.
- American Heart Association builds healthier lives, free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke
- Children’s Cardiomyopathy Foundation accelerates the search for causes and cures for pediatric cardiomyopathy through increased research, education, awareness, advocacy, and support to affected children and their families
- Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation raises awareness about sudden cardiac arrest and helps save lives through education, research, and community.
- Simon’s Heart prevents sudden cardiac arrest and death in children, teens and young adults
- WomenHeart improves the lives of women with or at risk for heart disease, while fighting for equity in heart health
- Open My Heart Foundation helps eliminate heart health disparities among African American Women and Women of Color
- Camp del Corazon provides a free-of-charge summer camp for children with heart disease in the Los Angeles area
- August Heart provides free heart screenings to teenagers to identify selected heart abnormalities in an effort to reduce the risk of sudden cardiac death in the San Antonio area
- Camp Bon Coeur supports, encourages, and fosters the wellbeing of children and adults with heart defects in Louisiana
Use this month as an excuse to love yourself and others just a little bit more. Spread the love by donating to these organizations that are helping to promote heart health in the U.S. 🫀❤️