Unmeasured nutrition and over exertion can cause cardiac arrest? Tips to protect your heart | Health

In today’s fast-paced world, where convenience often trumps health, the impact of unmeasured nutrition and over-exertion on our well-being cannot be overstated though we all know that diet and exercise play a crucial part in our heart‘s health. Nutrition forms the foundation of our overall health, and when it is unmeasured or imbalanced, the consequences can be severe.

Unmeasured nutrition and over exertion can cause cardiac arrest? Tips to protect your heart (Image by gstudioimagen on Freepik)

In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Dr Ripen Gupta, Senior Director and Unit Head – Cardiology at Max Smart Super Speciality Hospital in New Delhi’s Saket, explained, “A diet high in processed foods, saturated fats, and sugars can lead to obesity, high cholesterol levels, and hypertension – all of which are risk factors for cardiovascular diseases, including cardiac arrests. This was proven in a study done in US where a southern diet i.e diet rich in saturated fats and meat lead to more cardiac arrest as compared to a mediterranean diet which is rich in fruits, vegatables, skimmed milk and lean fats like chicken and fish. On the other hand, inadequate intake of essential nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and fiber can weaken the heart muscle and impair its function, making it more susceptible to sudden cardiac events.”

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He added, “Similarly, over-exertion, especially when combined with poor nutrition, can put undue stress on the heart and increase the likelihood of cardiac arrests. Engaging in intense physical activities without proper training or recovery time can lead to conditions like myocardial infarction or arrhythmias, where the heart’s rhythm is disrupted, potentially resulting in a life-threatening situation. Moreover, pushing the body beyond its limits without adequate fuel in the form of balanced nutrition can deplete energy stores, impair muscle function and compromise the heart’s ability to pump blood effectively.”

To address these issues and mitigate the risks associated with unmeasured nutrition and over-exertion, Dr Ripen Gupta suggested a holistic approach to health and well-being is essential. He advised, “This includes adopting a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats, while limiting the consumption of processed and sugary foods. Additionally, incorporating regular physical activity into our daily routine, with a focus on gradual progression and proper rest, can help strengthen the heart, improve circulation, and reduce the likelihood of cardiac events. The connection between unmeasured nutrition, over-exertion, and cardiac arrests underscores the importance of making informed choices that prioritize the health of our hearts. By being mindful of what we eat, how we exercise, and the impact of these factors on our cardiovascular system, we can take proactive steps towards a heart-healthy lifestyle. Let us strive to nourish our bodies, move with purpose and safeguard our hearts for a long and fulfilling life ahead.”

Echoing that unmeasured nutrition and overexertion indeed contribute to cardiac arrests, Dr SS Sharma, Mentor and Chief Clinical Advisor at Heartnet India, shared, “Factors such as obesity, overweight and stress-induced overexertion pose significant threats to heart health. Opting for a diet low in sodium and saturated fat helps mitigate the risk of heart disease and cardiac arrests. Conversely, a diet rich in added fats, fried foods, processed meats and drinks with added sugars is linked to an increased likelihood of sudden cardiac arrest. Unhealthy lifestyle choices, like smoking, excessive alcohol consumption and pushing the body beyond its limits through intense physical or mental exertion, heighten the risk of cardiac arrest.”

Cautioning that excessive exertion can adversely affect heart health and lead to arrhythmia escalating to even sudden cardiac arrest, Dr SS Sharma recommended, “Maintaining a balance through a healthy diet, proper blood pressure and cholesterol levels, along with regular exercise is crucial for both mental and physical well-being, ultimately promoting a healthier heart. Eating well-portioned meals ensures adequate nutrient intake, maintaining a balanced weight, and reducing the risk of heart diseases. Choosing plant-based foods, whole grains over refined ones, opting for low-fat dairy, and incorporating nuts and seeds into your diet contribute to preventing heart diseases. Establishing healthy sleep habits further reduces the risk of heart-related issues. Consulting a doctor for personalized exercise advice and assessing genetic predispositions can guide precautionary measures for maintaining optimal heart health.”

Additionally, he advised, “Practicing good sleep habits lowers the risk of heart-related issues. Embracing a healthy lifestyle can significantly reduce the risk of coronary artery disease by over 80%, lower the likelihood of ischemic strokes by 50%, decrease sudden cardiac deaths by 80%, and prevent premature deaths associated with heart disease. Hence, adopting a healthy lifestyle and prioritising physical health are imperative for safeguarding heart health. It’s crucial to consult a doctor for a personalized diet plan tailored to individual needs. This ensures proper guidance, reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases, especially for those with underlying conditions like diabetes or a history of heart failure or attacks. Additionally, Regular check-ups for blood pressure, cholesterol, and other health concerns, and consultation with a doctor, contribute to preventive care, mitigating the risk of heart disease.”

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