February is American Heart Month

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February is American Heart Month, and not just because of Valentine’s Day! Heart disease, including stroke, is the leading cause of the death in the United States.

In an effort to fight this battle, Congress, in 1963, declared February ‘American Heart Month’ a time for education about the prevention and treatment of heart disease. This February, make your heart your valentine, and treat it right! Nutrition plays a valuable role in the prevention of heart disease. Obesity, high blood pressure and high cholesterol are three major risk factors for heart disease, and eating the right foods is essential to keeping them in check.

The Cardiac Recovery Cookbook from Hatherleigh Press, is the best resource out there for heart-healthy and delicious recipes. By altering a few simple ingredients to reduce sodium, saturated fat, cholesterol and calcium, family favorites will be transformed into healthful dishes – without sacrificing flavor! For a Valentine’s Day treat, we recommend baking your sweetie a Heart-Shaped Frosted Cake, certain to win both your heart and theirs!

HEART-SHAPED FROSTED CAKE

INGREDIENTS: For Cake: 2 cups cake flour 2 tsp baking powder 1 cups sugar 4 Tbsp margarine 4 eggs 1 Tbsp orange peel 1 tsp vanilla cup skim milk

For Icing: 3 oz low-fat cream cheese 2 Tbsp skim milk 6 Tbsp cocoa 2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted tsp vanilla extract

TO PREPARE CAKE:

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

2. Grease 10-inch round pan (at least 2 inches high) with small amount of cooking oil or use nonstick cooking oil spray. Powder pan with flour. Tap out excess flour.

3. Sift together flour and baking powder.

4. In separate bowl, beat together sugar and margarine until soft and creamy.

5. Beat in eggs, orange peel and vanilla.

6. Gradually add flour mixture alternating with milk, beginning and ending with flour.

7. Pour mixture into heart-shaped pan. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until done. Let cake cool for 5-10 minutes before removing from pan. Let cool completely before icing.

TO PREPARE ICING:

1. Cream together cream cheese and milk until smooth. D cocoa. Blend well.

2. Slowly add sugar until icing is smooth. Mix in vanilla.

3. Smooth icing over top and sides of cooled cake.

4. Garnish with strawberries or cherries for an extra decorative touch!

The Cardiac Recovery Cookbook is available in bookstores everywhere and is the first step to a healthier heart and a happy heart month! For more information on cardiac health, refer to The Cardiac Recovery Handbook, also from Hatherleigh Press.

The Author, M. Laurel Cutlip, R.D., L.N., is a registered dietician and licensed nutritionist. She is co-author of Combat Fat! and lives near Baltimore, Maryland.

Co-Author Sari Budgazad, R.D., CDN, is a nutrition consultant for the New York-Presbyterian Hospital Cardiac Health Center. She has also consulted for ABC World News, lectured at the 92nd Street Y, and written for Today’s Dietitian, among others.

The foreword was written by Paul Kligfield, M.D., who is Professor of Medicine at the Weill Medical College of Cornell University and Director of the Cardiac Health Center in New York City. He is a graduate of Harvard Medical School.

THE CARDIAC RECOVERY COOKBOOK By M. Laurel Cutlip, R.D. A Healthy Living Book ISBN: 1578261899 in paperback is 160 pages / 6 x 9 inches.

Alan Gray is the Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of NewsBlaze Daily News and other online newspapers. He prefers to edit, rather than write, but sometimes an issue rears it’s head and makes him start pounding the keyboard. Alan has a fascination with making video and video editing, so watch out if he points his Canon 7d in your direction.