Smoking, sedentary lifestyle and supplements are the reasons behind increased heart attacks, reveals expert
Inder Kumar, Amit Mistry, Raj Kaushal and now reportedly Sidharth Shukla to add to the unfortunate list of celebrities who lost their lives to heart attack. Who would have imagined somebody as fit and healthy as Shukla, also as young as him, will fall prey to the silent killer, as per the reports, however police investigation is underway. Shukla, at 40, who was at the peak of his career and was enjoying the stardom that one can only desire of, left for the heavenly abode today.
However, all these sudden and young deaths give rise to a pertinent question. How and why? At a time when people are more conscious about their health than ever, the cases of heart attacks are on a high. Is it because of the stress caused by the pandemic or does it mean all that glitters is not gold? To be precise, no matter how fit we look from the outside it is important to be as fit, if not more, from the inside too.
Dr Subhendu Mohanty, Head and Senior Consultant - Cardiologist, Sharda Hospital, Greater Noida, tells you that the rising cases of heart attacks among the young can be attributed to a sedentary lifestyle and stress. Though people have become concerned about their health, they are not taking proper care of it.
“This is true that during the pandemic people have become concerned about their health, but the reality is they are not doing much for it. Also, there are few misconceptions related to heart attack. Some believe only those with high cholesterol or blood pressure can suffer from a heart attack. Hence, they focus more on this and get their blood tests done every six months. These are all unscientific methods being propagated by several agencies. As per science, one need not go for a routine check-up at the age of 30,” says Mohanty. People have to understand what the major risk factors are. Today these are stress and smoking.
“Nobody quantifies stress and very less do anything about it. The second thing is smoking has become common. This is the most dangerous risk factor. Other than that lack of exercise, poor diet and inadequate sleep also has a role to play. Our sleep patterns have gone for a toss with the night shifts. A good night’s sleep can’t be replaced. If you haven’t had a proper sleep last night, it will increase the stress levels the next day,” he explains.
He tells you that many people instead of quitting smoking, reduce the daily count. However, this won’t be of any help. “It is important to quit smoking if you love your heart. Many people compare themselves with other people that if the other one is smoking 20 cigarettes a day and is doing perfectly fine, I can do away with one. This is wrong. We can’t tell whose body is reacting to these toxins,” asserts Mohanty.
Apart from that, our focus today is solely on muscle building. We want to look good, but our internal health suffers because of it. “People can say that celebrities exercise a lot, and still fall victims to heart attack. The fact of the matter is that it is not only about muscle building. One has to stay healthy from inside and stress can never let it happen,” opines Mohanty.
Also, the new trend of everything that calls itself an immunity booster is running off the shelves at lightning speed has to stop. Supplements have become a part and parcel of our lives during the pandemic.
“It is important to know what supplements you are taking. Some of these can be anabolic steroids which can do more harm than good. Most of the brands in the market don’t clearly mention the ingredients and certificates, hence it becomes difficult to know what you are having. This unrestricted use of supplements in daily life may also be a reason for the increased incidents of heart attacks in the young,” he tells you.
These tips will come in handy.
- Use any supplement only after thorough research about its ingredients and certifications.
- By adding one fruit or 250 grams of raw vegetables in the form of salad, like cucumber, can help improve your heart health. Diabetics can look for fruits which have less sugar.
- Don’t add extra salt in your food.
- Say no to vanaspati ghee. Also, avoid baked foods like cakes and cookies. They have a high amount of vanaspati ghee in it.
- Avoid empty sugars. These are widely available in soft drinks.
- Take adequate sleep.
- Spend time with your family. Indulging in playing games will help reduce stress.
- Pause, think and unwind for a while.