These are many misconceptions in our society about heart diseases like any other topic – there is a dire need to educate and inform people about problems and their solutions.
According to the WHO (World Health Organization), majority of Pakistanis don’t participate in physical activity (exercise, sports) which is the leading cause of heart problems in the world and Pakistan as well.
About 1,115 people die everyday in Pakistan due to heart diseases. At least 12 Pakistanis die every hour due to heart attacks. These lives can be saved managing high blood pressure, diabetes, stress, obesity, cholesterol, eating healthy and exercising. Tobacco, alcohol use also have to be dropped.
Therefore let’s educate a bit ourselves about misconception around heart diseases. Let’s explore 3 common myths around heart problems.
Before we talk about myths, let’s pause for just a second. If you or your loved is struggling maintaining a good heart health and don’t want to miss on living the healthiest life, then you’ll probably find great help in talking directly to a cardiologist. You can get help by booking an online video consultation or appointment with the best cardiologist in your city.
1. Heart diseases only happen to men
Heart diseases can only happen to men and not women or women are at low risks compared to men.
Cardiovascular diseases (diseases of the heart and blood vessels) affect both men and women alike. Women are usually less aware of risk factors. As a woman, it’s important to know heart disease can affect you. Good news is, in many cases, it can be prevented and people can live a healthier life.
Actions to take
Whether you are a man or woman, ask cardiologist or your physician to do a baseline heart examination. This includes checking your cholesterol and blood pressure, and then follow the doctor’s recommendations.
2. Having high blood pressure is okay in old age
There is nothing wrong with high blood pressure in old age, it happens to everyone.
Blood pressure does tend to rise with age, but this doesn’t mean it’s necessarily healthy or normal. It happens because arteries (vessels that carry blood to different parts of the body) become stiff with age.
Stiff arteries force the heart to pump harder creating a never-ending-cycle. Blood colliding against walls of arteries causes them to damage and weakness. Already overworking heart pumps even harder to meet the body’s blood demands. This further damages arteries and invites fats into walls of arteries, this is how high blood pressure increases the risk of heart attack as well as stroke.
Actions to take
Get your blood pressure checked, if it’s above 140/90 mm (of mercury), ask your doctor what you can do to bring it down.
3. Eat as little fat as possible if you’re heart patient
If you are a heart patient, you should avoid fats and oil at all costs or almost eliminate their intake.
While it’s true that a heart patient eat foods low in saturated fat, partially hydrogenated fat, and trans fat. But fats in vegetables and other foods are beneficial, in fact, eating food high in omega-3 fatty acids (cauliflower, soybeans, seeds. eggs , spinach, salmon, etc.) can lower the risk of heart disease.
Actions to take
Include low-fat dairy products, nuts, and olive oil in your diet. If you eat meat, it should be cut lean and in case of chicken, its fatty skin should be removed.
It’s important to be aware about misinformation and filter it out, but more important is to take action. Risk of heart diseases can be reduced by regular exercise, improving diet by including fish, vegetables and cutting off consumption of tobacco in any form (if you are consuming).
Don’t have time to go to the gym?
You can use apps from appstore which guide you through every exercise, set and track your progress as well. And all this, at your home! Exercises not only increases life span after as heart attack, but it helps your brain, focus, and happiness level to grow.
If you or your loved one has high blood pressure, chest pain , it’s best to talk to a cardiologist who can help you create a plan to stay healthy. Book your video consultation or appointment with a cardiologist who would listen to you unconditionally and prioritizes you and your heart problems.
Keep eating healthy food.
You deserve to live the happiest and healthiest life.
What is one thing you would do this week to level up your heart health?