Just because you're a heart patient doesn't mean you have to miss out on some Valentine's Day romance.
Sure, you might need to skip the bonbons -- not that you should be eating candy anyway, even if you're not a heart patient -- and your doctor might have a long list of other "don'ts" you need to follow.
But there's still one "do" you can do: If you can climb a flight of stairs without suffering chest pain or a bout of gasping, you can have sex -- even if you had a heart attack just last week, according to the latest advice from the American Heart Association.
AHA doctors say sex is only a very tiny risk factor for a heart attack -- and that risk is the same regardless of whether or not you've already suffered one.
That being the case, I can't think of a better way to help yourself recover from a heart attack -- because sex itself is actually one of the best ways to boost your ticker in the first place.
One recent study found that men who have sex at least twice a week are 50 percent less likely to suffer a fatal heart attack than men who do it less than once a month.
Regular sex can also cut the risk of prostate cancer -- and sex in general, for men and women alike, can lower levels of stress, boost general well-being and may even help you to live longer.
Of course, the AHA gets a lot wrong -- carb-heavy, low-fat diet, anyone? -- so naturally, they've managed to botch this one too.
Instead of just telling men it's OK to have sex after a heart attack and leaving it at that, they had to add that it's safe for them to try penis pills like Viagra, too (unless they take nitrates) -- despite the fact that there's nothing safe about sex meds.
Along with links to heart problems, especially in heart patients, sex meds can rob you of both your vision and your hearing. They can also cause headaches, stomach problems and painful erections that won't go away without the help of an ER doc with a sharp instrument.
If you're having problems down there, forget meds. Try losing weight first.
Obesity causes testosterone to plunge and estrogen to rise -- a one-two punch right where it hurts most. In most cases, dropping those pounds will put you right back on your game, no meds necessary.
More importantly, losing weight will also help boost your stamina -- so you'll actually have the energy you need to get moving in the bedroom again, too.