Heart Month Activity Ideas

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Dancing Heart PosterHappy Valentine's Day! Will you be our Valentine? Our gift to you is not a card or a piece of candy, but rather a guide to great Heart Month activity ideas. Enjoy!

  • Angie Jones did a fun activity with a first grade class. She cut out a giant heart-shaped poster for her students and showed it to them at the beginning of class. Then the kids went through old magazines and cut out pictures of heart-healthful foods and fitness activities. Once they had a great big pile, they glued the pictures on the giant heart. The class ended up with a great “heart collage!” Of course, the fun didn't stop there. The collage was used on a bulletin board at the Health District with credits to the first grade class who worked on the heart. What a great way for kids to learn about what makes a heart healthy! A group discussion during and after the creation of the collage is a wise idea too.
  • Last year Margaret W. Kemp, MNS, RD, LD, offered “A Romantic Dinner for Two” health and cooking session. The session involved a dietitian/chef and an RN coordinator. The chef demonstrated knife skills and the RN demonstrated how to use a chef’s knife with a variety of fruits and vegetables. The audience loved it. The menu featured mushroom pâté with freshly made pita crisps; citrus marinated flank steak (Laura’s Lean, grilled), roasted red peppers, carrots, butternut squash, and potatoes, and and almond poppy seed angel food cake. Samples were available for the 70 participants. Handouts included how to cut/prepare vegetables, roasting temperatures/times, and suggested spices. Tips were given for using tabletop grills or toaster ovens for roasting in addition to the conventional oven; other ideas to make the evening romantic that weren’t food- or alcohol-oriented were also shared.
  • With all of the talk about making a better health plan, why not use this month to show everyone they can make their own health plan to prevent both heart disease and cancer? The American Institute for Cancer Research (aicr.org) has a “big three list” to help reduce diabetes, heart disease, and cancer (another big three):
    1) Eat a healthful, plant-based diet.
    2) Maintain a healthy weight.
    3) Set aside at least 30 minutes per day for some kind of exercise.
    Have participants discuss these three options and brainstorm ways to incorporate each one into their lifestyles. You can also make a "Big Three" display board that features the three approaches to staying healthy. Include a compilation of the group's ideas.

What are your favorite ways to celebrate Heart Month? Tweet us @foodhealth or write on our Facebook wall. Of course, if you'd like some fresh inspiration, check out the Nutrition Education Store and its featured products below...

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