Tuesday November 21, 2017

4 Ways to Beat the Risk of Heart Attack in your 30s

Unhealthy eating habits and sedentary lifestyle are some major factors why men and women are at the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases early on in life

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A healthy diet can help you to counter heart related diseases

Jan 10, 2017: According to the WHO, over 17.3 million people die every year from the heart attack and stroke. And if we look at the Indian context, things don’t look bright either. Unhealthy eating habits and sedentary lifestyle are some major factors why men and women are at the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases early on in life.

At an event to commemorate the ‘World Heart Day’, several health experts across the country stated that there are several instances of individuals in the late 20s and early 30s being admitted to hospitals for the treatment of ailments related to the heart. If this trend continues, then the country would transform into the ‘Heart Disease Capital’ of the world in the near future. Heart problems are critical, and the risk can be averted by resorting to the healthy lifestyle.

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Say No to Smoking

If you are a smoker, it’s time to ditch the habit. It is a well-established fact that cigarette smoking is linked to lung cancer and respiratory tract disorders. But, did you know that this habit can also put you at the risk of heart diseases? Here’s how cigarette smoking can lead to heart diseases –

  • Deprives heart from receiving enough oxygen
  • Shoots up the blood pressure
  • Increases heart rate
  • Causes clots in the blood which can cause heart attack and stroke
  • Damages blood vessels of the heart

While most people are aware of the hazardous effects of smoking, giving up on this habit is not easy. One has to stay determined. You could also consult a doctor or physician for medications or techniques to fight the urge to smoke. Try using nicotine gums and patches, which have proved to be effective for other people.

Stay away from Junk Food

Those with a family history of coronary heart diseases should particularly be careful about what they eat. Consuming trans-fat and sodium-laden food can build up fat deposits in the coronary arteries that can further lead to heart failure and even stroke. Therefore, bid adieu to pre-packaged convenience food and say hello to the following dietary choices that promote good health –

  • Increase the intake of dietary fiber like whole grains, nuts, seeds, legumes, etc.
  • Have a generous portion of fruits and vegetables, especially those with a low glycemic index like apples, cherries, tomatoes, lettuce, cauliflower, bell pepper, bottle gourd, etc.
  • Include supplements like fish oil and Omega fatty acids which help control cholesterol and high blood pressure.
  • Consume enough water. Health experts point out that consuming an adequate amount of water per day can significantly reduce the risk of heart diseases. Studies have also indicated that not drinking enough water can lead to dehydration, thereby elevating the risk of heart diseases, such as, whole blood viscosity, plasma viscosity, hematocrit and fibrinogen. Therefore, invest in a good water purifier, such as a Kent water filter that gives out pure drinking water without leaching out essential natural minerals. This way you will have access to clean and fresh drinking water always.

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Don’t be a Couch Potato

For the optimal cardiovascular health, the American Heart Association recommends

  • 30 minutes of a moderate aerobic workout for five days a week or 25 minutes of a high-intensity aerobic exercise for at least three days in a week is essential.
  • Muscle or strength training for a minimum of 2 days in a week is also advantageous for weight loss along with many health benefits.

Therefore, put on your workout gear and chalk out a fitness goal. People who are over-weight should start with a moderate workout, and slowly transcend to a more vigorous routine. Group classes for aerobics and Zumba are fun to attend, and will also keep you motivated. Look out for unique exercise options in your neighbourhood. These days, several social apps will connect you with people who are on a similar mission for good health. It’s always better to work out with a buddy than alone. You can also consider joining a running group. It is a great way to reach your fitness goal and strike new bonds of friendship, at the same time.

Correct your Sleep Cycle

Not many people realize, but there is a strong correlation between the lack of sleep and an increased risk of heart diseases. Sleeping for less than six or seven hours a day is not good for heart health.

  • The shorter spell of sleep shoots up the blood pressure and increases the danger of heart attack and stroke
  • Sleep deprivation can also lead to the increased heart rate.

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Whether for a healthy heart or better concentration, maintaining the sleep hygiene is quite important. In the age of the internet and smartphones, people tend to stay awake for long hours. As a result, they are unable to have the required amount of sleep at night. The key is to shut all distractions, such as, laptops, phones, TV, etc. few hours before the sleep time. If you are required to get up at a certain time every morning, clock your sleep time accordingly.

Wishing for good health is not enough. You need to take a good care of yourself to enjoy the optimal health not just in your younger days but throughout.

Next Story

WHO launches a new global effort to end TB by 2030

The announcement was made in the Global Ministerial Conference in Moscow.

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WHO will start working towards ending Tuberculosis
Dr. Simon Angelo (L) examines Iman Steven suffering from tuberculosis, held by her mother (R) at the hospital of Doctors Without Borders (MSF), June 15, 2016, at the Protection of Civilians (PoC) site in Malakal, South Sudan. VOA

Delegates from 114 countries have agreed to take urgent action to end tuberculosis (TB) by 2030, the WHO said.

The announcement on Friday came as the delegates gathered in Moscow for the first WHO global ministerial conference on ending tuberculosis, Xinhua news agency reported.

The delegates promised to achieve strengthen health systems and improve access to the people regarding TB prevention and care so that no one is left behind.

They also agreed to mobilize sufficient and sustainable financing through increased domestic and international investments to close gaps in implementation and research.

Resources are expected to advance research and development of new tools to diagnose, treat and prevent TB, and to build accountability through a framework to track and review progress on ending TB.

“Today marks a critical landmark in the fight to end TB,” said World Health Organisation (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

“It signals a long overdue global commitment to stop the death and suffering caused by this ancient killer.”

Though global efforts to combat TB have saved an estimated 53 million lives since 2000 and reduced the TB mortality rate by 37 per cent, progress in many countries has stalled, global targets are off-track and persistent gaps remain in TB care and prevention, according to the WHO.

As a result, TB still kills more people than any other infectious disease. Due to its antimicrobial resistance, TB is also the leading killer of people with HIV.

Representatives at the meeting, which was attended by over 1,000 participants, also promised to minimize the risk and spread of drug resistance and do more to engage people and communities affected by or at risk of TB. (IANS)

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Goodbye Holy Smoke, Vatican City bans Sale of Cigarettes

The Vatican, a tiny walled city-state surrounded by Rome, is one of the few states to ban smoking.

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sale of cigarettes
The faithful gather in front of St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican. VOA

Vatican City, November 10, 2017 : Pope Francis has ordered a ban on the sale of cigarettes inside the Vatican from next year because of health concerns, a spokesman said on Thursday.

“The motive is very simple: the Holy See cannot be cooperating with a practice that is clearly harming the health of people,” spokesman Greg Burke said in a statement.

He cited World World Health Organization (WHO) statistics that smoking causes more than seven million deaths worldwide every year.

Cigarettes have been sold at a discounted price to Vatican employees and pensioners.

Vatican employees are allowed to buy five cartons of cigarettes a month. Many Italians ask their non-smoking friends who work in the Vatican to buy cigarettes for them because they cost much less than in Italy, where they are subject to heavy taxes.

Burke acknowledged that the sale of cigarettes has been a source of revenue for the Holy See, adding, “However, no profit can be legitimate if it is costing people their lives.”

The spokesman said the sale of large cigars would continue at least for the time being because the smoke is not inhaled.

The Vatican, a tiny walled city-state surrounded by Rome, is one of the few states to ban smoking. Bhutan, where smoking is deemed bad for one’s karma, banned the sale of tobacco in 2005. (VOA)

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Benefits of spicy food: Reduces risk of heart attack, BP & stroke, New Research Suggests.

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Spicy chinese food
Benefits of spicy food: Reduces risk of heart attack, BP & stroke, New Research Suggests.(Image:wikipedia)

Beijing, October31’2017: If you enjoy eating spicy Chinese food, there are greater chances that you would crave less for salt and have lower blood pressure, potentially reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke, new research suggests.

“Previously, a pilot study found that trace amounts of capsaicin, the chemical that gives chili peppers their pungent smell, enhanced the perception of food being salty,” said senior study author Zhiming Zhu, Professor at the Third Military Medical University in Chongqing, China.

“We wanted to test whether this effect would also reduce salt consumption,” Zhu added.

The study enrolled more than 600 Chinese adults and determined their preferences for salty and spicy flavours. Researchers then linked those preferences to blood pressure.

The findings, published in the journal Hypertension, showed that compared to those who least enjoyed spicy foods, participants with a high spicy preference had lower blood pressure and consumed less salt than participants who had a low spicy preference.

They also used imaging techniques to look at two regions of the participants’ brains — the insula and orbitofrontal cortex — known to be involved in salty taste.

The researchers found that the areas stimulated by salt and spice overlapped, and that spice further increased brain activity in areas activated by salt.

This increased activity likely makes people more sensitive to salt so that they can enjoy food with less of it, the researchers said.

“If you add some spices to your cooking, you can cook food that tastes good without using as much salt,” Zhu said.

“Yes, habit and preference matter when it comes to spicy food, but even a small, gradual increase in spices in your food may have a health benefit,” Zhu said.(IANS)