Many young and middle-aged people today are dying of sudden heart attacks. Studies show that cardiovascular diseases (CVD) strike Indians a decade earlier compared to their Western counterparts.
Why is this happening? How can we prevent it? Are we just focused on post-heart attack action? Or should we be focused more on prevention?
Luke Coutinho, Holistic Lifestyle Coach Integrative and Lifestyle Medicine shares an input that could prevent heart attacks at a young age:
Cholesterol is not the culprit, inflammation is: Many people believe that high levels of cholesterol and triglycerides are the sole culprits behind their heart attacks. The main reasons behind most heart attacks are inflammation and oxidative damage in the heart, blood vessels, endothelial lining, arteries, and more. While maintaining healthy cholesterol levels is important, we cannot blame heart attacks on cholesterol levels alone.
What then can you do to keep inflammation in check and your heart strong? Adopt simple lifestyle changes.
Switch From Ordinary Substandard Cooking Oils to Cold-Pressed Oils: Refined oils are highly inflammatory and a threat to your heart. Using refined oils just to save some money isn't a wise idea. Choose the right quality and quantity of oil to boost your heart health. It might cost you a few extra bucks, but remember, your health is not a cost but an investment.
Switch From A Sedentary Lifestyle to An Active One: Even if you don't engage in a full-fledged workout, just stay active. Walking and yoga are the most effective exercises. Choose fun workouts that you enjoy -- dancing, aerobics, Zumba, swimming, whatever it is, but keep that body moving. People who live a sedentary lifestyle are at high risk of heart attacks. Having said that, over-working out with little or no rest or recovery period is equally harmful. So, figure out the adequate level of activity your body needs and stick to it.
Don't Take Matters to Your Heart: Before renting out your heart space and mind space to a person, event or experience, ask yourself if it is worth it. While stress is inevitable, what sets a happy person apart from a stressed person is their capacity to diffuse and navigate stress and see things in a positive light. You can continue attending stress management classes and workshops, and while all of them can help you feel better for some time, the real change happens when you start changing your perspective towards life and how you relate to stress.
Learn to accept and let go. Build your self-worth, create a beautiful inner world, reflect inwards, and allow these teachings to slip into your daily living.
Fix Your Sleep Routine: There is nothing cool about pulling an all-nighter to work or socialize more. Your body only cares about survival. Remember, your sleep is your heart's free drug. The chronic deprivation of it can increase your risk of a heart attack. Your heart is a muscle that needs recovery. Lack of sleep increases your insulin resistance and makes you more prone to type-2 diabetes and a gamut of metabolic conditions. So, adopt a fixed sleeping schedule and sleep deep.
We cannot wait for more misfortunate incidents to realize the importance of lifestyle and start prioritizing it. We must wake up and work towards prevention. Many of us may go through heart disease later in life, no matter how well we exercise or eat clean. So, identify risk factors and work towards tackling them. Even if one of your risk factors is genetic predisposition and there is nothing you can do about it, you can still alter your lifestyle. Our intelligent human body was designed to fix and heal itself. The least we can do is invest in it and help it do its job effectively. Lifestyle can help you bridge this gap.
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Kathmandu, Sep 7 (IANS) World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has called for countries to work together to ensure that another pandemic at the magnitude of the Covid-19 crisis should not occur again in the near future."The pandemic's impact differs from country to country," Ghebreyesus said at the inaugural ceremony of the 74th Session of the WHO Regional Committee for Southeast Asia here on Monday. "We must ensure that a pandemic of this magnitude does not occur in the near future."He urged the entire world to work together to make it a reality.Addressing the virtual session hosted by Nepal, top health executives emphasised the need for greater commitment to global healthcare delivery and a risk-averse health system, as well as the importance of providing vaccines, medicines, equipment and technology to the region.Poonam Khetrapal Singh, WHO regional director for Southeast Asia, spoke of the significance of increasing the health sector's capability.Nepali Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba stressed that for health care reaching out to individuals in distant areas should be a top concern for everyone.The five-day session is being attended by representatives from Bangladesh, Bhutan, South Korea, India, Indonesia, the Maldives, Nepal, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Timor-Leste. --IANSksk/
New York, Aug 20 (IANS) Immediate and urgent globally coordinated efforts to mitigate climate change and increase resilience to extreme heat to limit additional warming can help save lives, say researchers.Extreme heat is an increasingly common occurrence worldwide, with heat-related deaths and illnesses also expected to rise.Reducing the health impacts of extreme heat is an urgent priority and should include immediate changes to infrastructure, urban environment, and individual behaviour to prevent heat-related deaths, said researchers in a new two-paper Series on Heat and Health, published in The Lancet."Two strategic approaches are needed to combat extreme heat. One is climate change mitigation to reduce carbon emissions and alter the further warming of the planet. The other is identifying timely and effective prevention and response measures, particularly for low-resource settings," said Kristie Ebi, Professor at the University of Washington, US."Failure to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to develop and deploy evidence-based heat action plans will mean a very different future awaits many people and communities around the world," she added.According to a new Global Burden of Disease modelling study, also published in The Lancet, more than 356,000 deaths in 2019 were related to heat and that number is expected to grow as temperatures rise worldwide. However, many heat-related deaths are preventable by mitigating climate change and reducing exposure to extreme heat, the researchers said.When exposed to extreme heat stress, the body's ability to regulate its internal temperature can be overwhelmed, leading to heat stroke. In addition, physiological thermoregulatory responses that are engaged to protect body temperature induce other types of physiological strain and can lead to cardiorespiratory events.Effects from extreme heat are also associated with increased hospitalisations and emergency room visits, increased deaths from cardiorespiratory and other diseases, mental health issues, adverse pregnancy and birth outcomes, and increased healthcare costs.To counter these health effects, the researchers highlighted accessible and effective cooling strategies at the individual, building, and urban and landscape level.--IANSrvt/vd
As the threat of third Covid wave continues, the Delhi government has prepared a roadmap to ensure no death from the lack of oxygen, including several other measures like augmenting beds in hospitals, number of health workers, development of PSA oxygen plants and pediatric task force. The roadmap also includes bed management in hospitals, arranging medicines and the early completion of vaccinations program in Delhi.The Delhi government has started installing oxygen generation plants and increasing hospital beds to accommodate 37,000 cases a day, as per estimate. However, the cases can go up to 45,000 a day in worst condition.To ramp up the oxygen supply in Delhi, the Kejriwal government recently approved the Medical Oxygen Production Policy with incentives. He tweeted, "Approved Medical Oxy Prodn Promotion Policy. It provides several incentives to pvt sector to set up oxy prodn plants, invest in Oxy tankers n set up oxy storage facilities. This will help improving oxy availability in Del which became a huge bottleneck in handling the last Covid wave".Preparation to prevent oxygen crisis:<br>A total of 42 PSA (pressure swing adsorption) plants have been installed in hospitals by the Delhi Government that may generate 50.08 metric tonnes of medical oxygen to prevent repeat of the oxygen crisis in Delhi. Out of 42 PSAs, 13 plants which include seven in Delhi government hospitals and six in Centre-run hospitals have been set up using the PM Cares fund. However, other plants have been set up under CSR initiatives. At least 18 more PSA plants are likely to be set up in Delhi government hospitals by August 31 and three by October 15.Apart from PSA plants, the Delhi government has worked towards maintaining the oxygen storage capacity. Three oxygen storage tanks have been built with a capacity of 57 metric tonnes per tank. A total of 18 oxygen tankers will be brought from Bangkok for uninterrupted oxygen supply. Two cryogenic bottling plants with 12 MT capacities have been established.Special Task Force:<br>The Delhi Government has constituted two special task forces - pediatric special task force and state-level expert committee to efficiently handle the third Covid wave.The pediatric special task force with 8 members in the committee, headed by IAS Satya Gopal, will see the covid management keeping in view its impact on kids during the third wave. The 13-member state-level expert committee, headed by the same Satya Gopal, will prepare an action plan for health infrastructure in Delhi, oxygen supply, medicines and other requirements during the third wave.<br>Community based Health Assistance:<br>Including the medical oxygen supply, the national capital Delhi also hugely suffered the crisis of health workers during the peak in the second wave. Kejriwal has announced that to train 5,000 community health assistants who can be used as health workforce in the time of crisis. These health assistants are undergoing the training at nine hospitals in Delhi to handle the critical situation of pandemic, life-saving, first aid and home care treatment.Graded Response Action Plan:<br>The national capital Delhi has prepared a Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) to handle the third Covid wave. Under the plan, four types of levels and color-coded alerts systems have been approved. The four colour codes - Yellow, Amber, Orange and Red - have been identified to differentiate situation based on the Covid positivity rate (on two consecutive days), cumulative number of new cases (over a week) and average oxygenated-bed occupancy (for a week). Likewise, Yellow alert will be issued if the positivity rate over 0.5 per cent continues for two consecutive days along with 1,500 new cases in one week or 500 oxygen beds occupied in seven days.(Avinash Prabhakar can be reached at [email protected])--IANS<br>avr/skp/
London, Aug 6 (IANS) A team of scientists have identified an experimental drug that may help prevent Covid-related heart damage.Scientists at the University of Cambridge grew heart cells in the lab using human embryonic stem cells, to understand how the virus infects the heart cells. Crucially, these model heart cells also contained the key components necessary for SARS-CoV-2 infection -- in particular, the ACE2 receptor.Using the model, they identified an experimental peptide drug called DX600 which can prevent the virus from entering the heart cells. The findings are published in the journal Communications Biology."Using stem cells, we've managed to create a model which, in many ways, behaves just like a heart does, beating in rhythm. This has allowed us to look at how the coronavirus infects cells and, importantly, helps us screen possible drugs that might prevent damage to the heart," said Dr Sanjay Sinha from the Wellcome-MRC Cambridge Stem Cell Institute.The team showed that some drugs that targeted the proteins involved in SARS-CoV-2 viral entry significantly reduced levels of infection. These included DX600 -- an ACE2 peptide antagonist which is a molecule that specifically targets ACE2 and inhibits the activity of peptides that play a role in allowing the virus to break into the cell.DX600 was around seven times more effective at preventing infection compared to the antibody, though the researchers say this may be because it was used in higher concentrations. The drug did not affect the number of heart cells, implying that it would be unlikely to be toxic."The spike protein is like a key that fits into the 'lock' on the surface of the cells -- the ACE2 receptor -- allowing it entry. DX600 acts like gum, jamming the lock's mechanism, making it much more difficult for the key to turn and unlock the cell door," said Professor Anthony Davenport from the Department of Medicine and a fellow at St Catharine's College, Cambridge.He added that further research is needed on this drug, "but it could provide us with a new treatment to help reduce harm to the heart in patients recently infected with the virus, particularly those who already have underlying heart conditions or who have not been vaccinated." It may also "help reduce the symptoms of long Covid".--IANSrvt/vd
The rainy season is a relief after hot summers, but with it comes humidity and no one appreciates sticky and unpleasant weather. Humidity also causes serious hair problems. When faced with a particularly humid day, even the most perfectly coiffed and blow-dried styles devolve into frizzy disasters.
There's nothing wrong with a little seasonal frizz and volume, but if you want to avoid the extra poof and keep your groomed tresses intact between seasons, Pooja Nagdev, Aromatherapist, Cosmetologist, and Founder of INATUR, shares tricks to combat the humidity.
Wash Your Hair With Cooler Water: Although we would almost all agree that warm showers are pleasant, I believe that lower temperatures are better for your hair and skin. You don't have to go ice-cold, but lowering the temperature of your shower to the coolest you can stand can tighten your hair scales, increasing glossiness and manageability. Before getting out of the shower, run the water down your hair from roots to ends to make post-shower styling easier.
Apply a Protective Layer of Styling Products to Your Hair: anti-humidity sprays aren't a marketing ploy; they work for a reason. Smoothing treatments, such as hair milk, leave-in conditioners, gels, and serums, form a barrier between the hair and moisture in the air, which may take a few more minutes before leaving the house. They operate by forming a protective barrier over the hair shaft, preventing it from expanding and frizzing up when the weather gets humid.
Moisturize Those Ends: Because dry hair is more vulnerable to humidity, nourishing and moisturizing it will make it less thirsty for the moisture in the air. In addition to utilizing a hydration shampoo and conditioner, after-shower leave-in conditioners can help seal in moisture. Don't forget to incorporate hair oils in your styling routine.
To Smooth Over Strands, Use a Little Heat (With Heat Protectant): If your hair is prone to puffing up as it dries. To make your hair as sleek as possible, you should use a heated tool. You avoid damage, be sure to use a heat protectant first. The extra heat will aid in removing the natural curling tendency. It will be much more difficult to revert once the heat cools and locks in your style. Blow-dry brushes are ideal for styling, drying, and reducing frizz at the same time if you're searching for a quick and easy cure.
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