A healthy heart is a key to a healthy body. Heart diseases have always been a silent killer with not many clear symptoms. One in four adults in India suffers from hypertension, and there are rising instances of high blood pressure cases among the young generation making it particularly alarming.
We need to create more awareness around High BP and understand some of the reasons that are causing this growing surge among the younger people around us:
- Sedentary Lifestyle: Whether we are working virtually or physically, prolonged hours of sitting or overall inactivity can negatively impact our health. Virtual working during the pandemic has further aggravated the situation with a complete lack of physical activity
- Working Habits: Jobs are getting increasingly competitive with the increased work hours resulting in increased stress levels leading to cardiac issues.
- Hypertension: Prolonged hypertension forces the heart to work harder to pump blood to the rest of the body. It causes the lower left heart chamber to thicken that increases the risk of heart attack, heart failure and sudden cardiac death
- Obesity: Lack of physical activity coupled with Smoking, Drinking and constant availability of junk food through delivery apps are adding to the waistline. Today, our diet has more trans fats and refined sugars, leading to higher BMI (Body Mass Index) scores and BP risk. As the higher your BMI scores, the higher is your cardiac risk. For adults, a BMI above 30 is classified to be obese.
- Metabolic Disorders: These are a cluster of conditions that increase the risk factor of heart failure. Some of these disorders include insulin resistance, hypertension (high blood pressure), abnormal cholesterol, etc.
So, can we take some tiny steps? Let us adapt to a healthier lifestyle to keep our hearts healthy and prevent heart diseases:
- Eat healthy: A diet rich in fruits, vegetables and fiber have health benefits beyond cholesterol control. Switch to a low-fat and low-sodium diet today.
- Exercise Regularly: It could be as simple as 30 minutes of a brisk walk, swimming, cycling, or any physical activity five times a week. Yoga, meditation, or pursuing any hobby can also help to keep your stress levels low.
- Adequate Sleep: Sleep is the key to heart health. An average adult requires seven to eight hours of sound sleep every night. So have a fixed sleeping schedule and sleep well.
- Manage your Weight: With a balanced diet and exercise, you can watch on your weight. This will also keep your cholesterol and triglyceride levels in control.
Besides following a heart-healthy diet and practicing an active life, if you are 40 years or above, you should get a cardiology checkup once a year to assess your heart’s health. With modern medicine and treatment for coronary heart disease (CHD), there are ways to help and manage the symptoms and reduce the risk of further problems. CHD can be managed effectively with the help of your healthcare provider. Coronary heart disease is not completely curable but with timely treatment, we can surely manage the symptoms and reduce the risk of heart attacks.
Stay aware and stay heart-healthy.