The American Heart Association has dedicated Friday, February 6, to National Wear Red Day to help raise awareness for heart disease – particularly in women. Heart disease and stroke kill 1 in 3 women, yet it’s 80% preventable.
Significant strides have been made over the last 10 years since the first National Wear Red Day as guidelines have educated millions of healthcare providers to recognize and treat heart disease and stroke in women. It’s no longer thought of as “just a man’s disease,” with nearly 90% of women making at least one behavior change.
Even making small adjustments to one’s diet can make a big impact — and naturally, we turn to coffee and its potential benefits. Here are 3 easy ways to make your favorite morning drink that much healthier:
- Cut down on the sugar. Skip the artificial sweeteners and other chemical additives. Use real cream (in small doses) or milk (skim, 1% or 2%), or try alternatives like almond milk and coconut milk. To add a little sweetness, nectar, honey or natural sugar (in the brown packet) will do the trick. For an extra immunity boost, try adding coconut oil, which can help stimulate your metabolism.
- Optimize what time you drink coffee. It might be best to wait just a little longer after waking to enjoy that first cup of coffee because your body is “naturally caffeinating,” meaning your cortisol levels are at their peak around 8-9am (under normal circumstances). So staggering your coffee breaks between 9:30-11:30am, and 1:30-5:30pm gives you the true caffeine boost your body can take advantage of.
- Drink water first thing in the morning. Before filling up your coffee pot, or preparing your K-Cup machine, drink a glass of water. A small glass of water first thing in the morning can go a long way and keep you hydrated.
Show your support for saving women’s lives through heart health by wearing red and spreading the message on Friday and all year long. On social media, use the hashtag #GoRed to show how you Go Red to support the cause on National Wear Red Day.
Learn About 10 Ways to Go Red in February at goredforwomen.org/get-involved/national-wear-red-day/10-ways-to-go-red/, and explore more surprising health benefits of coffee in the infographic below.
Interested in donating? Visit the American Heart Association’s Donate page to learn more: goredforwomen.org/wearredday/donate/.