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Kathi Casey
The Healthy Boomer Body Expert

Kathi is an author, coach, popular speaker and talk radio show guest, writes monthly columns for the South Shore Senior News, Life After 50, Boomers Forever and Retirement Living Magazines, produces her own TV show called To Your Health" in the Berkshires and owns the Healthy Boomer Body Studio in Otis, MA. Her programs combine good fun and humor with simple yet powerful techniques that fit easily into busy schedules.

Baby Boomer Women: Take Charge of Your Heart Health!

September was National Women's Health Month, and Anti-Aging Month, so this article is filled with tips and techniques to keep us Baby Boomer Women vital and healthy and enjoying life for many years to come!

Heart disease has become the number one killer of women in the US , yet heart disease is preventable; this fact boggles my mind! We are currently the largest demographic in this country and that makes us a force to be reckoned with; it's time for us Baby Boomer women to take charge of our own health care, regardless of what Congress does! You've seen the headlines stating that 60 is the new 40. OK, now let's make 70 the new 45! Here are a few simple, natural ways to prevent heart disease from controlling our lives:

•  Don't underestimate the effect of stress on health. Stress is inevitable in today's fast paced world, but our reaction to it is not. Try laughing your head off. Truly. Laughter releases the tension in many stressful situations. Laughing releases endorphins (feel good hormones) in our bodies and endorphins chase away those harmful stress hormones. Plan some time every day to read some good jokes, watch a comedy sketch, or listen to Robin Williams in your car during rush hour. Your heart will thank you.

 

•  Spice up your life! Herbs and spices are rich in antioxidants, low in calories, and they are potent inhibitors of inflammation, which science now believes is one of the top causes of heart disease. Turmeric, cinnamon, and other spices have been used as medicines in India and China for centuries and western science is finally catching up. Some examples:

•  A recent study substantiates that “cumin's traditional use as a culinary spice in foods is beneficial in combating stress and related disorders.” Another study in 2009 proved cumin's antioxidant benefits are stronger than that of Vitamin C.

•  As little as a half teaspoon of cinnamon has been shown to significantly reduce blood sugar levels in people with type 2 Diabetes as well as reduce other risk factors associated with heart disease.

•  Nutmeg reduces high blood pressure and increases circulation.

•  Turmeric is high in antioxidants which support your immune system and reduce inflammation.

•  Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties as well.

 

•  Omega 3 fish oils are amazing anti-inflammatories – ever see a grizzly bear with heart disease? Omega 3's from cold water fish like salmon, anchovies, herring, tuna, and striped sea bass can significantly reduce high blood pressure and other risk factors for heart disease. So what are you waiting for, pick up some salmon today!

For those of you who really can't stand the taste of fish, most doctors recommend taking 1000 – 1200 mg. of Omega 3 fish oil supplements a day for optimum health.

 

•  Exercise is not necessarily a chore. Exercise can be fun and it can also easily fit into our daily schedules. According to the Mayo clinic, physical activity helps control your weight and can reduce your chances of developing other conditions that may put a strain on your heart, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes. It also reduces stress, which can be a factor in heart disease. For us busy Baby Boomers, the Mayo clinic suggests breaking a workout into three, ten minute segments, so:

•  Most of us get a ten minute coffee break in the morning – use it to run downstairs to a bathroom on a lower level and then walk back up and take the long way back to your desk. Or walk fast around the block for ten minutes.

•  Another option is purchasing a head set and walking around your desk while talking on the phone.

•  We Boomer women invented multi-tasking, so it's second nature to fit exercise into our daily routines. Push-ups are a great way to get the blood pumping and can be done on your knees or forearms if military style is not possible for you. I sometimes do a few push-ups while preparing dinner. Then as I walk around the kitchen getting dishes, spices, etc. I'll do lunge walks. This is a great workout I can do right in the kitchen; I don't need to drive to a gym to do it!

Get creative and find as many ways to fit ten minutes of fitness into your schedule as you can, while spicing up your cooking to include these beneficial herbs, so together we can stamp out heart disease in our lifetimes.

 

For more tips on improving your game with Pilates: info@KathiCaseyPilates.com

Best of Health to you all.

 

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