Category Archives: Heart Health

5 Tips for Preventing Kids’ Cavities

5-tips-for-preventing-kids-cavities-happyfitmama-comI was compensated by ACT for my time on this sponsored post. All opinions, as always, are my own.

Three years ago, I thought my daughter was going for a routine dental checkup. It later turned into a drawn out process of finding another dentist (pediatric) who would do a filling on one of her teeth. I was shocked. How could my daughter have a cavity?  She doesn’t eat candy. She doesn’t drink juice. She rarely has sweets. I thought we were doing all the right things to prevent cavities.

It turns out that the culprit was because of her tightly spaced teeth. Everything she ate, even the good for you foods, were getting stuck in the tiny spaces. And staying there despite brushing twice a day.

Since then, we’ve learned that we need to floss every single day. It’s helped a lot and she hasn’t had a cavity since.

day in the life breakfast

With Halloween right around the corner, it’s a good time to put into practice ways in how to “scare” away cavities in your kids. We’ll have more candy than any human being needs from Trick-or-Treating. Thankfully, my kids are ok with picking out a few of pieces that they want to keep for themselves and then Ron and I bring the rest to our workplaces. It’s kind of funny that every other person at our jobs does the same thing. No one wants to keep the candy in their house. But somehow, all the candy disappears. Wonder where it goes?!?!

Here are 5 tips on keeping your children’s teeth healthy and cavity free all year round:

1 ) Visit the dentist starting at age one and then once every six months. Do this for the rest of your life!

2 ) Have your child brush for two minutes, two times per day.  We found a cute toothbrush that flashes for 1 minute intervals – 1 minute for the top, 1 minute for the bottom.  There’s also tons of apps or timers to make it fun too.

3 ) Floss everyday especially if the teeth are touching. We like the mini flossers that are easier for small hands and small spaces.

4 ) Provide healthy snacks . Limit sweets in quantity, portion size and frequency.  Every time you eat or drink something that contains sugar or starches, bacteria in your mouth use the sugar and starch to produce acids. These acids begin to eat away at the tooth’s enamel. Drink water after every meal or snack to “rinse” teeth to help wash way the acid.

5 ) If your children are over the age of 6, use a children’s mouthwash, such as ACT Kids Anticavity Rinse every day.  It was ranked as the #1 recommended children’s mouthwash by pharmacists in the 2016 OTC Guide from Pharmacy Times.


And here’s something that can help you scare away the cavities – Enter to win this Anticavity Goody Bag that contains a bottle of ACT Kids Anticavity Rinse, a mouthwash timer, dentist-approved treats, and more.

To enter, leave a comment with your own tip for scaring away cavities.

Additional entries can be earned by tweeting this message:

Say BOO! to cavities this #Halloween w/ ACT Kids Anticavity Rinse #speepstakes via @happyfitmama

Giveaway is open only to US residents 18 years of age or older. A winner will be selected at random with at 9 p.m. ET on Sunday, October 23, 2016 and will be notified via email.

Good luck!






Heart Disease and Women

Heart disease is the number one killer of women. Get the facts and reduce your risk!

As some of you may know, I work as a Clinical Exercise Physiologist in Cardiac Rehabilitation. When I went into this profession, I had no real reason. My family does not have a strong history of heart disease. I just liked exercise, talking about exercise and counseling others on how to live a healthier life. Over the years, my reasons have changed. One of the big reasons are the people who become my patients that make me enjoy my job.

When someone has a heart event, often times they feel scared, alone and not sure of what the future holds for them. Cardiac Rehabilitation is a medically supervised program to help patients recover quickly and improve their overall physical, mental, and social functioning after an event. Essentially, it’s an exercise, education and support program to help patients learn how to live a healthier life. Research shows that patients who participate in Cardiac Rehab live longer and have a better quality of life than those that don’t.

I’ve seen a wide range of people who have been affected by heart disease whether it’s from Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery (CABG), Myocardial Infarction (MI), PCI/Stents, Stable Angina, Cardiomyopathy, or Valve Replacement/Repair. When I first entered the field 14+ years ago, most of my patients were at least 70 and older. While we still see older patients, we have also begun to see people in their 30s and 40s. The youngest patient I ever had was in her late 20s.  It was scary that she was actually younger than me!  And it’s not just here and there that we see younger patients. We recently had 8 patients out of 16 total who were 50 or younger. Most of them were otherwise healthy, exercised daily, ate “right” and were not overweight. The common link? All of them had a very strong family history of heart disease.

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Unfortunately, you can not change your genetics. But that doesn’t mean you should start chain smoking, stop exercising and eat nothing but donuts and beer, either. Imagine if those patients of mine did not exercise, ate horribly day after day and were severely overweight? They most likely would not have survived their heart event.

So what risk factors can you control:

  • Don’t smoke
  • Manage your blood sugar
  • Get your blood pressure under control
  • Lower your cholesterol
  • Know your family history
  • Stay active
  • Lose weight if overweight
  • Eat healthy

Heart disease is the number one killer of women.

Stop for a second and reread the sentence above.  Did you get that? Heart disease is the number one killer of women. Most women fear breast cancer.  I know I do since my mom had breast cancer. Women routinely get their mammograms and do self checks each month.  But what about your heart?  Most women, especially younger women, think heart disease is something you don’t have to think about till you are at least 70.That’s not the case at all.

  • Heart disease causes 1 in 3 women’s deaths each year, killing approximately one woman every minute.
  • 90 percent of women have one or more risk factors for developing heart disease.
  • Since 1984, more women than men have died each year from heart disease and the gap between men and women’s survival continues to widen.
  • The symptoms of heart disease can be different in women vs. men, and are often misunderstood.
  • While 1 in 31 American women dies from breast cancer each year, 1 in 3 dies of heart disease.

Source: Go Red for Women

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Media has conditioned us to believe that the telltale sign of a heart attack is extreme chest pain. But in reality, women are somewhat more likely to experience shortness of breath, nausea/vomiting and back or jaw pain. Other symptoms women should look out for are dizziness, lightheadedness or fainting, pain in the lower chest or upper abdomen and extreme fatigue.

Even if you’re a yoga-loving, marathon-running workout fiend, your risk for heart disease isn’t completely eliminated. Factors like cholesterol, eating habits and smoking can counterbalance your other healthy habits. You can be thin and have high cholesterol. The American Heart Association recommends you start getting your cholesterol checked at age 20, or earlier, if your family has a history of heart disease. Also, keep an eye on your blood pressure. Both high cholesterol and high blood pressure have no symptoms.

#MNBChallenge |

If you are already active, great!  Keep it up! Physical activity is something that is linked to all the controllable risk factors of heart disease(diabetes, overweight, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, stress, etc.).  Make time for exercise by scheduling it in like you would a doctor’s appointment. You are worth the time!

I’m not trying to be Debbie Downer with all of this information. Heart disease is scary and it’s real. It can happen to anyone. But with the proper nutrition, exercise, knowledge, and awareness throughout your life, you can find the key on how to love your heart and have it love you right back.
For more information about heart disease, please check out the following links:

Go Red For Women Campaign

American Heart Association

Did you know heart disease is the number one killer of women?

How are you reducing your risk factors for heart disease?

Cell-nique Detox Drinks

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Cell-nique. All thoughts are my own.

At home juicing has become all the rage lately. I love to eat my veggies but I wonder if getting a little extra kick from juicing would help my health at all. The one thing that’s holding me back? The price tag of an at home juicer. Ouch! Of course, an alternative to making my own is to buy it from my local health food store freshly made or from a bottle.

Recently I was asked to sample Cell-nique Super Green. It’s a USDA organic drink that “energizes, detoxifies and nourishes your body” with the equivalent of 8 servings of fruits and vegetables in every bottle.

Cell-nique is vegan, gluten-free, and low-calorie (each bottle is less than 100 calories). All flavors of Cell-nique Super Green contain the same 31 organic super foods.  Most of the sugar count comes from the naturally occurring sugars in the fruits and vegetables, with a small amount of stevia and organic blue agave.

I was sent five flavors to try: Lemon Ginger, Citrus Vanilla, Pomegranate, Apple and Tropical Fruit. After reading the ingredient list on each, I knew that these were serious superfood drinks made with chlorella, blue-green algae, spirulina. They weren’t going to taste sweet and there would probably be a fishy smell. The taste of each flavor varied. Some of the flavors were good by themselves. The Citrus Vanilla was my favorite with a mild citrus flavor and subtle vanilla. It was hard to drink a whole bottle of any flavor at one time. I preferred sipping on it throughout the day. I also experimented a bit by making my usual morning smoothie with Cell-nique instead of coconut water.  I blended half a frozen banana and a little chocolate protein powder. The “green” smell was diminished and was really, really good!

Cell-nique Super Green - happyfitmama.comCell-nique is a great way to get your daily dose of superfoods and then some in one bottle. It’s a convenient way to get your green drink on-the-go when you may not have access to your home juicer.

If you are interested in trying Cell-nique for yourself, there’s a special offer going on right now if you buy online. Try your choice of any 1-3 bottles of Cell-nique now and get FREE SHIPPING! Redeem this offer at

You can also find Cell-nique on Twitter  and Facebook.

Have you ever tried Cell-nique?

Do you like green drinks?