Heart health is a top priority for me. It's also a big worry for the millions of women out there just like me who know that heart disease is our #1 killer. More than cancer, more than diabetes, more than having your brain explode inside your skull when someone says, "Don't worry about it, Little Lady - it's a Man thing!", heart disease is killing us.
This is not a good thing. But there is good news. We're not powerless against heart disease. There are things we can do - choices we can make and actions we can perform - to reduce our risk of heart disease. And if we're at a point where we have heart disease - or we're precariously on the brink - making the right choices and changes can help us slow the disease's progression.
Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum presents a comprehensive overview of the positive changes we could be making to improve our health in her new Heart Book: Every Woman's Guide to a Heart-Healthy Life. I was particularly happy to see her emphasis on the value of humor for heart health.
“It is also important to never forget to laugh," Dr. Steinbaum says in a recent Forbes magazine interview. "Laughter improves immune function, lowers blood pressure, enhances mood and decreases stress and depression.” Additionally, laughter is free, portable, always available, and works with everyone's diet. This makes it an ideal practice to add to your healthy heart routine.
You eat healthy every day; you stay away from cigarettes every day; you exercise every day - now add laughing every day. It's easier than you might think. Some of you are probably already laughing at the idea that you eat healthy and exercise every day - but honestly, all we can do in this world is our best. Having a positive attitude and laughing often will make it easier to maintain - and perhaps even improve - your heart health.
Want to learn more about adding more humor to your life in order to manage your heart health effectively? Check out What's So Funny About Heart Disease? It's a simple, silly guide jam packed with some serious science that will get you laughing - and feeling better! - fast.