Heart disease isn’t a big trend in my family. Sure, there’s some, my grandfather had some heart issues that contributed to his failing health, and my other grandfather died from a heart attack before I was old enough to remember meeting him.
Aaand now I’m reconsidering my luck. Especially since my doctor recently told me that my triglycerides were a little high – which apparently is not a good thing, because when I tried to fist-bump him he got mad.
My doctor then told me to exercise more and “over-indulge” less (if you know what he means). I asked him if one out of two was okay.
When you have kids, you find yourself getting exercise in all sorts of incidental ways (as you can see in the chart to the right). Unfortunately, you also have an increased desire to, ahem, “over-indulge” (if you know what I mean). And it seems neither those drills nor the ones I undertake at the actual gym are enough to ward off the potential health and heart troubles that being a fat slob can cause. Diet is a big factor too.
At least that’s what Michael Strahan said.
A few weeks ago, at the Dad 2.0 Summit, I had the opportunity to hear the former NY Giant – and Hall of Famer! – give a talk about fatherhood and fitness and being heart healthy. Strahan was at the conference was to promote the #Heart2Heart campaign he launched with Meta in February, which, apparently, is Heart Month. He wanted all of us to do a little heart murmuring (PUN!) with our families. (I actually got to meet him afterwards, whereupon he made fun of me for wearing sandals in February. I was about to retaliate by mocking the gap in his teeth, but he suddenly had to run. CONVENIENT.)
Meta is the hip new name for Metamucil, because this ain’t yo daddy’s Metamucil! It’s not just about pooping anymore. Metamucil and Meta Health Bars (grab a coupon) help lower cholesterol to promote heart health†.(Not that pooping is anything to sneeze at. I have a five-year-old and a newborn, any skittishness I had about bowel-related things left the building a long time ago.)
The Heart2Heart campaign is, duh, about our hearts – and about talking to your family about your heart health, which Strahan demonstrated via this video. I’ll be honest, talking to my family about heart disease is not something I’ve ever done. Not with my father, and certainly not with either of my sons, not yet. Detective Munch is only five; whatever he might glean from such a conversation would just make him nervous (and I’m pretty sure my seven-week-old would just poop mid-convo.)
But I do frequently talk to Detective Munch about the importance of exercise, both as a way to burn energy so Daddy doesn’t want to murder him, and also as an important part of being healthy. He ignored me and then demanded I play superheroes with him, so I immediately pretended to be Tony Stark and explained that he created the arc reactor in his chest to repair his damaged heart, and then segued into the conversation I was trying to have.
I may not know what triglycerides are, but I am a parenting GENIUS.
†Diets low in saturated fat and cholesterol that include 7 grams of soluble fiber per day from psyllium husk, as in Metamucil and Meta Health Bars, may reduce the risk of heart disease by lowering cholesterol. One adult serving of Metamucil Powder has 2.4 grams of this soluble fiber. One Meta Health Bar and one serving of Metamucil Fiber capsules have at least 1.8 grams of this soluble fiber.
Disclosure: I have partnered with Life of Dad and Meta Wellness for this promotion.