Heart attack risk peaks at 5 tips to keep your heart healthy - TobiVibes


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Heart attack risk peaks at 5 tips to keep your heart healthy

New Delhi: You’ve probably heard that cold weather can cause your blood pressure and cholesterol levels to rise, increasing your risk of a heart attack. But that’s not all, now, a new study has associated winter holidays with a higher rate of heart attacks, with Christmas Eve being the riskiest day of the holiday season. The researchers from the Lund University in Sweden said that the risk of having a heart attack was 37 per cent high around 10 p.m. on Christmas eve.

The study, which analyzed 16 years of data from the Scandinavian country, found that people above 75 and those with existing conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease, have the highest risk. Stressing the need for the society to raise awareness of this vulnerable group over the Christmas period, the study looked at whether time factors could trigger a heart attack.

According to the study, the chances of having a heart attack was also higher during New Years, midsummer holidays, early mornings (8 a.m.) and Monday mornings. Compared with the control period, Christmas and midsummer holidays had a 15 per cent and 12 per cent higher risk of heart attack respectively. But the Easter holiday and sporting events were not, said the study published in the medical journal The BMJ.

Apart from overindulgence in unhealthy food and beverages, emotional stress, and exhaustion during the holiday season have been linked to an increased risk of heart attacks. However, the authors concluded that no firm conclusions can be drawn about the cause and effect since it is an observational study.

Steps on how to prevent a heart attack

Heart attack prevention starts by making healthier, smart lifestyle choices. Here are a few things you can do to prevent or reduce your risk of having a heart attack.

  • Eat a heart-healthy diet that is loaded with plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, grains, and foods high in omega-3 fatty acids like fresh tuna or herring, etc. Adding a variety of nutrient-dense foods to your diet is a good way to ensure that your body gets all the nutrients it needs.
  • Cut back on salt, saturated fats, sweets, and red meats. Try to avoid trans fats and food high in hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated ingredients. Also, avoid or take alcohol in moderation if you drink.
  • Avoid or quit smoking, which is a major risk factor for heart attacks.
  • Stay physically active by including exercise in your daily routine – this will keep your heart and blood vessels in good condition by lowering your blood pressure. According to NHS, low-impact activities such as walking, swimming and cycling are good options to boost your heart health. Being physically active will also help you either maintain or lose weight.
  • Ensure that the levels of your blood cholesterol, blood pressure, blood sugar are under control. These conditions can be managed by losing weight (if you’re overweight), modifying your diet and taking medication, or doing a combination of these things.

Stay safe this holiday season!

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