By Christine Houlihan, Sligo IT student on placement with Croí
Your beloved may have the key to your heart, but healthy eating and getting active can be the key to a healthy heart. This Valentine’s Day why not treat your heart with love by sharing a heart healthy gift or date with your sweetheart.
- Rather than tempting your loved one with chocolates, get creative and consider gifting them something unique or that could last a lifetime. Gift a basket of fresh berries, some handpicked flowers or write the lyrics of a song that expresses your feelings into card.
- Sharing is caring, if gifted a decadent box of chocolates eat in moderation and savor every bite. Make the love go further by storing them in a fridge or freezer and enjoying later in the month in the company of friends and family.
- Take a cookery class together, brush up on your cookery skills and learn some tips and tricks along with delicious recipes for the next time you decide to stay in for date night. Cooking a romantic meal can be a great way for you both to bond and control the quality and quantity of meals.
- Use heart healthy ingredients, whether it’s breakfast for two or a romantic candlelit dinner for one. Use Galway Bay as inspiration by swapping your steak for local fish, rekindle your relationship with a less-favorite vegetable by preparing in a new way, or spice things up by replacing salt with herbs and spices.
- Lovers dining out for Valentine’s Day, avoid overdoing it by spending time planning your date in advance. Choose from one of the West’s many restaurants that use fresh, healthy, local ingredients, order half portions for larger meals, and skip or split desserts, your heart will thank you for it.
- Avoid excess alcohol, skip the pub crawl and take your date on a site crawl around Galway City this Valentine’s Day. Set off from O’Connell’s pub and make your way down past Lynch’s Castle before dancing under the moonlight down by the Claddagh.
- Spend quality time together, make it a day of meaning and unforgettable memories by bundling up and getting outdoors to visit some of Ireland’s best tourist attractions. Visit the wild Cliffs of Moher or take a more relaxed trip to the picturesque Kylemore Abbey.
- Take a walk along Galway’s Prom, and if you have a dog why not treat them this Valentine’s Day by having them come along. Walking just 30 minutes a day for 5 days a week can really benefit heart health and help with weight management.
- Give to one another by giving back, ask your date to volunteer with you at a local charity. Giving back is a healthy habit that will boost your mood and beat stress. Can you spare an hour or two to help the team at Croí ?
- Take time to relax, book a double date at a spa, attend a yoga class together or settle in and watch a romantic movie in the evening. Taking time out from everyday life is important for heart, head and overall health.