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Heart Attacks On The Rise: Dr Naresh Trehan’s Top 5 Tips To Prevent Heart Attacks

Heart disease among young people is on the rise in the country. Experts say that Indians get heart diseases 10 years earlier than their western counterparts.

Furthermore, according to an analysis conducted by National Intervention Council on 3.5 lakh heart patients, 1 in every 10 heart surgeries in 2015 were carried out on people below the age of 40.

The urban population is three times more prone to heart attacks then the rural population. The primary reason for this is more stress at both workplace and at home.

Also, westernization of our diets, urbanization of our lifestyle and pollution also play a major role in heart diseases.

Little or no exercise, junk food, smoking, drinking and obesity are other more key reasons for heart diseases among young people. Increase in weight leads to various hormonal changes in the body and increases inflammation, thus increasing risk of heart diseases. Other reasons for heart diseases are fluctuations in cholesterol level in the body, diabetes and hypertension.

So what can we do to combat this? We spoke to Dr Naresh Trehan who is a world-renowned cardiovascular surgeon, and here are his top 5 tips to prevent heart disease and heart attacks:

1. Smoking and Alcohol consumption

No smoking, alcohol none or in moderation (a glass of wine a day or two small drinks twice or thrice a week).

2. Diabetes/hypertension

If you have diabetes, high blood pressure or high cholesterol, keep them in strict control.

3. Exercise regularly

You must exercise 5-7 days a week for 45-60 minutes or walk 5-6 km. Keep your weight under control. This can easily be checked by Body Mass Index (BMI), which should be 19-25 (BMI = Weight in KG/height in meters squared, eg 70Kg/165cmx165cm).

4. Reduce stress

Stress reduction with yoga, gardening, music or any other hobbies. Take breaks from work. Periodic vacations serve as a great stress buster.

5. Regular checkups

Must do a regular checkup at least once at the age of 25 years and then annually after the age of 35. If there is a family history of high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol or heart disease in a first degree relative below 65 years of age, then this should be disclosed to your doctor and checkup plan frequency modified suitably.

(Dr. Naresh Trehan is the Chairman and Managing Director of Medanta – The Medicity and has five decades of experience in the field of cardiovascular surgery. He is a recipient of the Padma Shri and Padma Bhushan awards.)