‘Be extra cautious of heart health during winter’: Dr. Jaswal

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Mohali

10 January 2019

DIVYA AZAD

Advising residents of Tricity on ways to prevent a winter heart attack, renowned cardiologist Dr. R.K Jaswal, Director, Cardiology, Fortis Hospital Mohali said these winters are especially hard on the cardiac health.

Dr. Jaswal said, “During winter, there is a change in the ratio of daylight hours to dark hours, which changes the hormonal balance. The hormones involved, such as cortisol, can lower the threshold for a cardiovascular event. The drop in temperatures cause the arteries to tighten, thus restricting blood flow and reducing the oxygen supply to the heart. All of this can trigger a heart attack.”

Emphasizing on more awareness about cardiac health, he added: “During my long years of medical practice, I’ve seen people suffer the most due to lack of awareness about their own health. If somebody is already at the risk of Cardiovascular Disease due to genetics, obesity or stress, then they need to be tender to their heart. Start slow and don’t increase the intake of fatty foods, even though the cold weather might tempt you to indulge in sugary sweets.”

For the people of North, it’s especially important to ensure they keep themselves insulated and healthy to avoid increasing the risk of cardiovascular disease, he added. “The nearby high climes get snow and the mercury drops drastically. When the weather is cold, the heart has to work harder to maintain body heat. It’s tough on the heart – doing all that pumping,” the doctor shared.

Dos and Don’ts

  • Stay hydrated: Drink 8-10 glasses of water per day during the winter too
  • Keep a watch on your BP, Sugar levels, cholesterol and other risk factors
  • Avoid high calorie food
  • Avoid alcohol
  • Be aware about any change in BP or other vitals. Inform your doctor immediately if there is any drastic change
  • For high BP patients, early morning walks should be avoided. Walk when the sun is out
  • Take immediate opinion of a Cardiologist in case of suspected symptoms of heart pain in the form of chest pain, heaviness or constriction in the middle of the chest, going to arms or throat. Such symptoms, along with choking feeling and cold sweating, need immediate attention.

Dr. Jaswal has won a lot of global acclaim by representing India at prestigious cardiology forums across the world. He has more than 22 years’ experience in the field of Interventional Cardiology, has performed more than 30,000 invasive cardiology procedures and over 13,000 cardiac interventions, including complex and high-risk coronary interventions.

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