World Heart Day: Remedies and Precautions For A Healthy Heart

Dr. Hetan Shah, Consultant Cardiologist at Jaslok Hospital and Research Centre.

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Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of disease burden and deaths globally. The prevalence of heart disease and stroke have doubled over the last 25 years all over India. As Cardiovascular diseases are lifestyle diseases, everyone must know how to avoid it.

Screening for heart health

If you have test results that are less than ideal, it doesn’t mean you’re destined to develop a serious cardiovascular disease. On the contrary, it means you’re in a position to begin changing your health in a positive way.

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Recommended  Screenings

        
            

How  Often?

        
            

Blood pressure

        
            

Each  regular healthcare visit or at least once per year if blood pressure is less than 120/80 mm Hg

        
            

Cholesterol (“fasting lipoprotein profile” to measure total, HDL and LDL             cholesterol)

        
            

Every 4-6 years for normal-risk adults; more often if any you have elevated the risk for heart disease and stroke

        
            

Weight / Body Mass Index (BMI)

        
            

During your regular healthcare visit

        
            

Waist  circumference

        
            

As needed to help evaluate cardiovascular risk if your BMI is greater than or equal to 25 kg/m2.

        
            

Blood glucose test

        
            

At least every 3 years

        
            

Discuss smoking, physical activity, diet

        
            

Each  regular healthcare visit

        


The American Diabetes Association recommends testing for prediabetes and risk for future diabetes for all people beginning at age 45 years. If tests are normal, it is reasonable to repeat testing at a minimum of 3-year intervals.

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Healthy heart Tips from Dr. Hetan Shah

A) QUIT SMOKING: No amount of smoking is safe. Smokeless tobacco, low-tar and low-nicotine cigarettes, and secondhand smoke also can be risky. The good news, though, is that your risk of heart disease begins to lower soon after quitting.


B) EXERCISE : Getting some regular, daily exercise can reduce your risk of heart disease. Aerobic exercise and resistance training mainly contribute to preserving heart health.

Aerobic exercise : Improves circulation, which results in lowered blood pressure and heart rate. It is recommended to do at least  30 mins a day at least 5 days a week.

Resistance training (Strength work): It helps to raise HDL (good) cholesterol. At least two nonconsecutive days per week of resistance training is a good rule of thumb, according to the American College of Sports Medicine.

C) STRESS MANAGEMENT: Stress from challenging situations and events plays a significant role, particularly heart attack risk. Various forms of stress like workplace-related stress, financial stress, caregiver stress, and disaster-related stress can take toll on heart health.

Stress-easing strategies

1)Get enough sleep : Sleep duration (6 to 9-hour) is a key factor when it comes to heart health. 

2)Learn relaxation technique: Meditation, progressive muscle relaxation, guided imagery, deep breathing exercises, and yoga are mainstays of stress relief. 

D) DIETARY MODIFICATION 

1) Control your portion size

2) More fruits and vegetables

3) Limit Unhealthy Fats: Saturated & Trans Fats

3) Everyone should Pledge to reduce Salt, Oil & Sugar by 30%(Ek chammach kam ).


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