Stress is an inevitable part of our every day lives – from trying to manage work, to trying to find time for family and yourself. It’s important to recognize and manage it because stress can significantly raise the risk of heart disease and stroke. It could lead to the detriment of your mental health such as depression and anxiety if stress is overlooked over an extended period of time.

Stress first develops in the mind but has huge repercussions on your body. Stress can take a toll on your physical well being, damage your heart health, and over time can increase the risk of coronary artery disease.

Sometimes it’s not as simple as changing a job you dislike, change your work schedule, or avoid difficult people and situations. Here is our advice on how to better manage stress:

Get enough sleep

Getting adequate sleep is vital for mental and physical health. Fall short on rest can take a serious toll on your energy levels throughout the day, productivity, emotional balance, and your weight.

Avoid sleeping in on weekends. The more your sleep schedule alternates, the more likely you will experience jetlag-like symptoms. To make up for those late nights, opt for a nap during the day rather than sleep in to prevent your natural sleep-wake rhythm from being thrown off.

Get off your phone! Plenty of us are guilty of mindless browsing on our phones before bed. Melatonin, a naturally occurring hormone is needed to help regulate sleep and wake cycles. The light emitted from all the screens of electronics suppresses melatonin production. Try listening to music or read a book instead.

Follow smart eating habits

Cut down on the alcohol, caffeine and nicotine. These disrupt your ability to get good rest and interferes with your sleep cycle when you are out of it, especially if you have any of them closer to your bedtime.

Avoid eating large meals late at night. Try scheduling your dinners earlier if you’re planning on having a large meal. Your digestive system requires a time and energy to digest food which may be pulling you back from your body on concentrating to sleep.

Exercise

Exercise during the day for optimal results. Regular exercise allows you to sleep better at night and energizes you throughout the day. Exercise speeds up your metabolism and stimulates hormones like cortisol. Morning or afternoon does not make a big difference but working out too close to bed can make sleep afterwards difficult.

It can take several months of consistent physical activity before you can get the full sleep-promoting benefits. Just walking at least 10 minutes a day is enough to improve sleep quality. If you’re not a fan of intense exercise, yoga and stretching are great alternatives to help regulate your sleep.

Have any advice on how to get the best sleep you’d like to share? Please comment down below!

  1. Limit your intake of salt and caffeine. (No more than the equivalent of four regular cups of coffee per day.)
  2. Try to get 8 hours of sleep each night.
  3. Have regular check-ups with your physician. Early detection is the key to a successful solution.
  4. Keep a positive attitude and wear a smile… it takes only 22 muscles to smile, but 37 to frown.
  5. Make time for leisure activities such as reading, hobbies, sports, TV etc.

It’s so important to stay on top of healthy food options, especially for your heart but we can also understand that sometimes you might not have the time to cook a healthy meal. This is why according to Dr. David Friedman we have come up with 5 healthy sandwich options that are quick, easy, and delicious to make!

  1. Turkey Sandwich: Turkey contrains less fat and has an abundance of protein. Add some lettuce, mayo, cheese, and a few slices of tomato on delicious brown bread and you’re good to go!
  2. Tuna Sandwich: Tuna contains vitamin B-12 and B-6 which reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease, it also contains a high level of protein and fats.
  3. Bacon, Lettuce, and Tomato (BLT): This sandwich is not only easy to make but contains a lot of nutrients, although, bacon contains a lot of sodium, try replacing it with Turkey bacon. This is a delicious treat to throw on some whole wheat brown bread!

It’s so important to stay on top of healthy food options, especially for your heart but we can also understand that sometimes you might not have the time to cook a healthy meal. This is why according to Dr. David Friedman we have come up with 5 healthy sandwich options that are quick, easy, and delicious to make!

  1. Turkey Sandwich: Turkey contrains less fat and has an abundance of protein. Add some lettuce, mayo, cheese, and a few slices of tomato on delicious brown bread and you’re good to go!
  2. Tuna Sandwich: Tuna contains vitamin B-12 and B-6 which reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease, it also contains a high level of protein and fats.
  3. Bacon, Lettuce, and Tomato (BLT): This sandwich is not only easy to make but contains a lot of nutrients, although, bacon contains a lot of sodium, try replacing it with Turkey bacon. This is a delicious treat to throw on some whole wheat brown bread!

Serves 4

Ingredients

QuantityIngredient
1 lb.Ground Chicken
1/2 cupBreadcrumbs
1/4 cupParmesan cheese, freshly grated
2 tbsp.Fresh parsley, finely chopped
1 tsp.Oregano, dried
1 tsp.Thyme, dried
1/2 tsp.Salt
3-1 litre boxesLow-sodium chicken broth
2-28 fl. oz. cansTomatoes, diced, with juice from cans
8Carrots, diced
5Potatoes, peeled, diced
2Onions, chopped
4 clovesGarlic, chopped
1 tsp.Oregano, dried
2 tsp.Thyme, dried
4 tsp.Parmesan cheese, freshly grated

Instructions

  1. Combine the first 7 ingredients in the list very well.
  2. With moistened hands, form 1″ diameter meatballs (chicken).
  3. In a large soup pot/Dutch oven, bring the broth to a boil.
  4. Drop meatballs into the broth and cook at medium high for 5 minutes.
  5. Add tomatoes, their juice, carrots, potatoes, onions, garlic, oregano and thyme.
  6. Lower heat to medium
  7. Simmer, uncovered, breaking up the tomatoes with the back of a spoon.  Simmer for about 45 minutes until meatballs are cooked through and the vegetables are tender.
  8. Season to taste with pepper and try not to use any salt.
  9. Serve in a deep soup bowl (helps keep it nice and hot) and just before serving, sprinkle a teaspoon of the grated cheese on top of each bowl.

Recipes From Our Resident Expert, Marsha Rosen, RD
Here are some heart healthy recipes provided by Marsha Rosen, RD (Registered Dietitian). Marsha is Mike Salem’s sister and in addition to offering private nutrition counselling, Marsha provides group lectures, seminars and cooking demonstrations, and is a sought-after contributor to health-related publications.

If you have nutrition question for our dietician, you can email Marsha here…

Do you have a heart healthy recipe that you would like to share? Send your recipes to info@mikeynetwork.com