June marks the month in which we celebrate National Men’s Health Week and more specifically, Father’s Day. This day devoted to honoring dads everywhere is celebrated on the third Sunday of June, dating back to 1910, and typically involves gift-giving, special dinners and family-oriented activities. Men have special nutrition and health needs, as heart disease and cancer are among the top two causes of death in men, which can be affected by nutrition and lifestyle habits. We all know that a healthy diet is essential for fighting off disease, strengthening the immune system and simply feeling good. So what’s a guy to eat? It’s been said before that the way into a man’s heart is through his stomach, so why not give him something healthy for his heart too? Your local Hy-Vee is filled with foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids that will help dad reach his optimal health.
Nutrition Advice from the Heart
As a daughter, I’m always encouraging my dad to make healthy food choices, not only because I care about him but also because he has high cholesterol.
Sydney Jacobson, RD, LD; Visit me at your Windsor Heights Hy-Vee; contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Omega-3 fatty acids, a type of polyunsaturated fat, are a nutrient powerhouse when it comes to heart health and since our bodies cannot make these fats, they are essential to include in our diet. Unlike saturated and trans fats, which can increase risk for heart disease, omega-3 fatty acids can help prevent heart attack and stroke.
The three main types of omega-3 fats are eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and alpha linolenic acid (ALA). EPA and DHA, found in fish and seafood, are the most beneficial fats, especially for health of the brain, eyes and heart. They also can help lower triglycerides, the fat particles found in our blood. ALA omega-3 fats are found in some vegetables, seeds, nuts and soy and are beneficial for skin and hair health. The American Heart Association recommends eating at least two servings each week of fish, especially fatty fish. In general, a 3.5-ounce serving of fatty fish provides about 1 gram of omega-3 fatty acids.