Although the heart is only the size of a fist, it’s a hard worker. On average, it circulates more than 1.5 gallons of blood every minute – and beats more than 100,000 times per day as it moves oxygen and nutrients throughout the body.

During American Heart Month this February, we’re reminded to appreciate the critical role the heart plays in overall health – and to recognize the importance of prioritizing cardiovascular wellness. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States and worldwide, impacting both men and women across most racial and ethnic groups.

However, the good news is that heart disease is also preventable, starting with a handful of simple habits:

  • Moving more and sitting less is the best way to maintain good health throughout life – no matter what form that “exercise” takes! From gardening and yoga to swimming and golf, any activity that gets you up and active can benefit your heart. The American Heart Association recommends aiming for at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise each week.
  • Fresh air. Living close to nature has well-documented effects on lifelong health and well-being – and it can also benefit heart health. Spending time outdoors is shown to promote relaxation and reduce symptoms of stress – reducing cortisol, muscle tension, and heart rate – all of which are risk factors for cardiovascular disease.
  • Fresh food. When it comes to heart health, the best diet is a fresh one. Experts recommend a variety of fruits and vegetables, including plenty of leafy greens; whole grains; healthy sources of protein such as legumes, nuts, fish, and seafood; and low-fat or nonfat dairy.
  • Whether you’re having fun with old friends or making new ones, strong relationships are good for the heart in more ways than one. The wider your social circle, the more likely you are to get plenty of exercise and stay physically fit – and you’re also likely to have better heart health overall.
  • From laughing at a good joke to listening to a favorite song, fun in all its forms is an essential ingredient in a healthy lifestyle. Studies show that hobbies and leisure activities – such as sports, travel, art, reading, or playing board games – may be associated with a lower risk of heart disease later in life.

No matter your age, good heart health starts with a balanced lifestyle – and at The Mayflower, we’re making it easier for our residents to live well from the moment they move in. From an array of fitness classes and brain health seminars … to top-quality healthcare available right on campus, it’s the ideal environment to make wellness a priority.

Learn more about how The Mayflower’s whole-person approach to well-being empowers our residents to lead happier, healthier lives. Send us a message or give us a call at 407.672.1620 to request more information – or schedule your personal tour. We look forward to hearing from you!