World Heart Day

Experts advise to keep stress away

LUDHIANA: The World Heart Day was celebrated at various hospitals across the city.

Manav Mander

Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 29

The World Heart Day was celebrated at various hospitals across the city. Experts laid stress on choosing an active lifestyle for a healthy heart.

Office of Civil Surgeon, Ludhiana, held a function on the premises. Civil Surgeon Renu Chhatwal, while addressing the gathering, said stress was the major cause of heart diseases. “One should try to make life easy, keeping stress and worries at bay,” Chhatwal said.

Dr Varinder Singh, a city-based cardiologist, said, “Be mindful of calories consumed and calories burnt, especially after the age of 35 as body metabolism slows down. A heart-friendly grocery cart includes fresh fruits, vegetables, whole-grains, millets, whole-pulses, lentils, lean meat and fish. Make sure you don’t consume more than half litre of oil per family member, per month. Ditch processed food over fresh food. Salt intake should not be more than one tablespoon daily. Stay physically active throughout the day. Exercising for 30 minutes a day can reduce risk of heart disease.”

The World Heart Day was also celebrated at other hospitals.

Kulwant Heart and Vascular Centre

To mark the World Heart Day, Kulwant Heart and Vascular Centre, Kitchlu Nagar, organised a heart and health check-up camp. In all, 80 patients attended the camp. The patients were provided with the free of cost facilities for blood sugar and cholesterol check. Medicines, consultancy, electrocardiography (ECG) and a follow-up consultancy were also provided free of cost. Dr Kulwant Singh, managing director of the centre, said one should control unhealthy eating habits. “Eat large portion of low-calorie, nutrient-rich food such as fruits and vegetables and smaller portion of high-calorie, high-sodium food such as fast-food and food cooked in refined oil,” he said.

The experts said heart diseases cause about 7 million deaths per year, nationwide. By the year 2020, heart diseases are projected to be more prominent as the population ages steadily. More recently, it has emerged from statistics that even younger generation or young-adults are prone to the risk of heart diseases. This is due to global rise in associated risk factors which are both environmental and genetic.

Pancham Hospital

Dr RP Singh, chief cardiologist and managing director, on the launch of World Heart Day camp, said, “We aim to educate the masses about impending diseases pertaining to heart through our ‘community outreach programme’. We aim to emphasise upon the importance of early detection of heart diseases.” Harmanpreet Singh, director, operations, Pancham Hospital, said, “We are lowering the cost of our complete heart checkup which includes tests that can help us detect and delay the onset of heart diseases. This can be our modest contribution to protect people from imminent threat of heart diseases and related complications.”

To-do list for a healthy heart

Sugar: Excess sugar intake is a major risk factor for cardio vascular diseases, as it is linked to weight gain and diabetes. With these associated conditions, risk of developing heart diseases has increased by 30% 

Salt: Table-salt contributes to about 40% of daily sodium intake. High-level of circulating sodium is linked extensively to hypertension, a potential cause of heart diseases

Saturated fats: Saturated fats increase the level of cholesterol in blood, particularly the low-density lipoprotein or 'bad cholesterol'. Cholesterol tends to deposit in inner walls of the arteries and makes them narrow and coagulated. This reduces the efficiency of blood-flow and can potentially lead to a fatal heart attack

Smoking: Smoking also damages inner walls of the arteries and leads to reduced flexibility. Nicotine induces hypertension and high adrenaline levels increase the load on heart's pumping capability

Sedentary behaviour should be avoided: Lack of physical activity is associated with greater propensity for blood clots, stroke, heart attack and hypertension 

Stress should be kept away: Stress not only affects brain, but also heart and overall health. Stress reduces the amount of 'feel good' hormones and increases the exposure to persistently high-level of stress

Sleep: It is essential to have six to eight hours of sleep daily to ensure that the body is energised for the next day. Poor sleep is linked to increased risk of high blood pressure and weight gain, both of which can potentially turn into cardiovascular complications

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