May 22, 2013 | 06:13 AM (BD Time)
22 May, 2013 Wednesday
Heart disease risk increases in winter
The drop in temperature, caused by the coldest season of the year, could trigger a time when there is decreased blood flow to the heart muscle, causing angina, heart failure or even a myocardial infarction with or without sudden death. This is the warning Alexandre Cury, a cardiologist at Medical Diagnostic Bronstein.
According to him, the body internally resents the winter and, thus, the risk of heart problems also increase at this time. According to the American Heart Association (American Heart Association), the winter increases from 20% to 25% the incidence of cardiovascular disease.
The risks grow especially to people who already have a predisposition and for those who suffer from heart problems.
Cury explains that this is because the reactions of the organism at low temperatures (hypothermia) overload the cardiovascular system, which needs to work harder in the cold to keep the thermal equilibrium. These reactions include constriction (spasm) of blood vessels, shallow breathing through the mouth and increased heart rate. "With the cold, change occurs in vessels, especially arteries, causing less blood circulating to the heart. This can cause the heart from ischemia (lack of circulation in the coronary arteries) to angina (a type of chest pain) "he says.
Cardiologist warns that the elderly, the dangers are even greater. In heart disease, the cold can aggravate the symptoms of angina, increase blood pressure and risk of the elderly have a stroke.
Cury recalls that during the winter, the body is more susceptible to viral diseases, which may promote a greater demand for the body's stress, causing imbalance of the heart muscle, promoting heart failure as the main symptom is shortness of breath during efforts.
People should take care of the eating habits in the winter, that changes this time and should practice exercise even at low temperatures. Generally, people opt for heavier foods in winter, high in fat, and decrease the frequency of physical activity. "This combination can lead to uncontrolled risk factors for heart disease," he concludes.
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