World Heart Day 2020: Dr Chandrashekhar Kulkarni on how to keep your and the family’s heart healthy

The Cardiovascular and Thoracic surgeon tells us how he keeps his heart and his family's heart healthy this World Heart day.
Health & Fitness,World Heart Day,healthy heartWorld Heart Day 2020: Dr Chandrashekhar Kulkarni on how to keep your and the family’s heart healthy
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When it’s a matter of heart, doctors help the patient to keep to take the utmost care of it. But, we also tell you what a doctor does to take care of his and the family’s heart. Dr Chandrashekhar Kulkarni is very particular about adhering to a healthy lifestyle when it comes to the heart, and also ensures that his family too is doing so. Read on to know more about the tips he swears by to keep his and the family’s heart healthy.  

Dr Kulkarni and the entire family sticks to a healthy diet courtesy his wife Madhur, who is a nutritionist. She advises a proper proportion of diet including special adherence to the ratio of carbohydrates, proteins and fats. They see to it that the protein intake is adequate to balance out the carbohydrate part. It is 1gram per kilogram per day of the family. The family eats eggs to get their source of protein and sees to it that even the children Gunjan and Rutvik do so.

She takes care of the oil consumption of the whole family, and the type of oil to be used. It is not more than 1 tbsp per day per person. So, the average per month oil consumption is around 1.5 litres. Madhur advises a healthy mix of Polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) and the balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids for the heart. The oil also contains omega-3 eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) that helps maintain cardiovascular health. As a rule, they use oil more in PUFAs and less in Monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs). They eat flax seeds, salmon, sardine, and mackerel dense in omega-3. Eating less of saturated fat, cholesterol and triglycerides is the idea. The family avoids eating ghee as it is a primary source of triglycerides.

Also, HDL, which is high-density lipoprotein, is a beneficiary to prevent heart attack. Normally, one should have a higher HDL to reduce the chances of a heart attack. The family has made walnuts as a part of their diet as it is high in HDL.

The family’s breakfast consists of cereals and eggs. The lunch has a healthy dose of legumes, pulses, salads, fresh fruits and whole grains. 75% of dinner volume is salads and pulses with curd and 1 egg (without yolk). Dr Kulkarni suggests staying hydrated by drinking a sufficient amount of water. 

The family avoids eating paneer that is loaded with cholesterol and substitutes it with soybean or tofu. They have also cut down on red meat, spicy, processed, junk and salty foods. Excess amount of salt in the diet can worsen hypertension. And of course, no smoking or alcohol which increases the chances of heart disease. 

Kulkarni family makes sure to stay physically active 

Exercise can help increase HDL to keep heart attacks at bay. So, the family makes sure to opt for walking and walks 10,000 steps every day. The children go for cycling and running too. During the lockdown, the family managed to walk at home and veranda for an hour. The family does yoga for 15 minutes, daily. Also, Dr Kulkarni does planks to strengthen the core and tone the abdominal muscles. He also does cardio and weight training for the heart. Cardio can help increase HDL and reduces blood pressure. The more cardio you do, the more your baseline heart rate settles. The muscle of the heart receives blood only during relaxation. Hence, a lower heart rate reduces the oxygen demand of the heart. Exercising also reduces stress and lowers the chance of a heart attack.

The family also makes sure to get a good night’s sleep, take care of their mental and physical well-being, to safeguard themselves from heart problems. 

About the author: Dr Chandrashekhar Kulkarni, Cardiovascular and Thoracic surgeon, Global Hospital, Parel. 

ALSO READ: World Heart Day: Pros of opting for Bypass Surgery for a longer life explains surgeon, Dr Bipeenchandra Bhamre

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