Avoiding Heart Attacks

Winter can aggravate the risk of heart attack as chill can affect cardiac health of people, particularly high-risk population, as per experts. Those who have hypertension, diabetes or lung issues are at higher risks as winter appears to be a high time for heart attacks. The risk is not confined to the aged alone. The young and healthy individuals can also suffer heart attacks and strokes. All those people who are high risk, which means who have a family history of heart disease, have high blood pressure, those who are diabetic and those who have some other lung problem, are as per doctors advised to protect themselves against the winter chill.

According to doctors, gone are the days when children brought their parents to a cardiologist. Now, doctors are seeing parents bringing their children.

As per a survey published in the European Journal of Epidemiology, the number of strokes in the general population goes up by 11 percent for every 2.9 degree centigrade decline in temperature.

Cold temperatures cause the heart arteries to condense thereby restricting the blood and oxygen flow to the heart. This often causes a rise in blood pressure, making a heart attack or stroke more likely.

The mercury drop increases the chances of blood clot formation since blood platelets are more active and stickier.

In winters, there is a reduction in daylight hours which, as per doctors, affects the hormonal balance and causes vitamin D deficiency, a common trigger for heart attacks.

The cold weather also triggers bouts of depression, especially amongst the elderly, causing an increase in stress levels and hypertension, believe psychiatrists.

In addition, people indulge in high sugar, trans-fat, and sodium comfort food, which can be extremely dangerous for the diabetic and hypertensive population.

The doctors advocate habitual changes to reduce the risks of developing serious cardiovascular concerns during the winter months. There is a need for taking a heart-healthy diet. Eating small and frequent meals is recommended as it helps prevent excess pressure on the heart.

The doctors have been advising people to choose food that is rich in fibre and take small portions of each food item.

Among the factors also include low education level.  There is a need for out-of-the-box solutions combined with increased awareness to prevent heart attacks.  Also there is a need to cover extremities which means the head, the ears, the hands, and toes. Efforts should be made by all to ensure all precautions.

Related Articles