Shortly after my wife began her career at the American Heart Association, I started responding to the action alerts she sent out. Initially, I did it to support her. I didn’t realize how much it would end up supporting me.
I have learned a lot from the American Heart Association over the past 5 years and my life is much better for it. I already knew that avoiding smoking was the best thing I could do for my health. However, in the past 5 years, our diet has improved a lot since we started using AHA information as we shop and cook. Hearing and learning about the consequences of bad choices and healthy and fun ways to make good decisions has motivated our family to be more physically active, eliminate sugary drinks and cut back on sodium.
My family has a history of hypertension, so I have a genetic predisposition to heart disease. In fact, I myself have recently been diagnosed with hypertension. However, genetics are not everything. I know that my healthy lifestyle can and does contribute to keeping my BP down and my heart strong.
I want the state that I live in to provide the tools for everyone to live a healthy lifestyle. From heart defect screening in newborns to safe places to be active. I strongly believe we need healthy food in our childcare and schools, we need smoke free workplaces and everyone in Maine should have access to quality, affordable and accessible health care.
That is really why I answer Becky’s action alerts—not just to support her. I want our daughter to be strong and healthy so if genetics catch up to her, she will have all the tools she needs to fight back.
Please join me and answer AHA’s calls to action. Oh, and low-sodium peanut butter is just as good as the kind I used to eat.