February is heart health month, and it is appropriately paired during the same month we celebrate Valentine’s Day.
The emotion of love is connected with the heart.
As a society, we’ve associated “love” with the sweet flavor, and chocolate symbolizes the best gift to give to your sweetheart to show that you care.
Unfortunately, the sweet flavor isn’t actually the best flavor for the heart.
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine and the Five Elements, the bitter flavor is better to support healthy heart function. Bitter flavored foods and herbs cool the body and drain excess heat.
If someone is suffering from heart troubles, they may be better off eating something bitter rather than something sweet.
Some bitter foods good for heart health include:
I know it may not seem romantic to offer someone a bitter green salad, but if you care about the health of their heart, it would be a wise choice.
Plus, you could make that bitter salad taste absolutely delicious by incorporating a few elements to help them enjoy it better.
For example, if you massaged kale with lemon juice and added olive oil, cranberries and toasted pumpkin seeds, and prepared it all with loving intentions, I bet they’d be able to taste that love.
Like in this recipe here: Massage Kale Salad
Love may be a subtle ingredient, but it’s one of the most important.
As far as the sweetness someone may be craving… this is also absolutely essential for supporting the heart. But, it doesn’t have to come in the form of a box of chocolate.
You can share sweetness with anyone at any time of the year, not just on a nationally recognized holiday or during a specific month.
Here are some sweet things to share with someone to support their heart:
- Hand holding
This doesn’t mean that you can’t give someone a little bit of chocolate every now and then.
Just know that supporting the heart requires bitter flavored foods, combined with sweetness and loving intentions, plus a whole lot of hugs.
When you hug someone you are consciously and physically connecting with them, heart to heart.
I know we are not in the same room right now, but if we were… I would totally give you a big healthy hug!
Andrea Beaman is an internationally renowned Holistic Health Coach, Natural Foods Chef, Speaker and Herbalist. Named one of the top 100 Most Influential Health and Fitness Experts, she is also a recipient of the Natural Gourmet Institute’s Award for Excellence in Health-Supportive Education and a Health Leadership award from The Institute for Integrative Nutrition. Since 1999, Andrea has been teaching people how to harness the body’s own preventative and healing powers using food, herbal remedies and alternative medicine.
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