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Times Of India
29 September 2012
On the occasion of World Heart Day, cardiologists reveal the secrets of a healthy heart

Ahealthy heart is the need of the hour. September 29 is observed as World Heart Day globally.You can recharge a car engine if it fails but once the heart functioning fails it can't be restarted. So taking utmost care of your health is important. In our fast paced lives we have no time to keep our mind and heart sound. Jaskaran Singh Dugal, head of department of Cardiology, Jehangir Hospital explains reasons for heart diseases.

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"Heart attack and stroke are dreaded diseases promoted by sedentary life style which started in western countries and is now spreading to India, China and Japan.The consequences include obesity, diabetes and raised blood pressure resulting in the modern epidemic of heart attack and stroke.To prevent this and to keep a healthy heart it is necessary to follow a healthy lifestyle."

In the current lifestyle, stress surrounds us at all times. "A person is not only supposed to be physically healthy, but mentally too. A good physique and a relaxed mind are essential for an individual to do his job well. Growing stress and a sedentary lifestyle can lead to heart diseases," says cardiologist, Dr Ravindra L Kulkarni, who has an organization called Just For Hearts, focused on keeping stress and lifestyle diseases at bay.

People at risk:
Smokers Obesity Sedentary individuals (who do not exercise) Fast food diet / junk food High blood pressure High LDL Cholesterol Low HDL Cholesterol High Blood glucose (diabetes) High C– reactive proteins

Symptoms:
Retrosternal chest pain, squeezing in character, profuse sweating, breathlessness Epigastric discomfort often confused with gas. It may present with Congestive heart failure Atypical location of pain (neck/hand) Stroke Apprehension and nervousness Sudden mania Syncope (transient loss of consciousness) Overwhelming weakness Acute indigestion Peripheral embolism It is best to seek medical advice urgently or go to the hospital

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A healthy diet:
The Five big tips for healthy long life are Non smoking Ideal weight Ideal diet Exercise Moderate alcohol "Avoid overfeeding in early childhood. Indulgent parents and grandparents are to blame for wanting a healthy chubby baby rather than instilling life long pattern of restricted food intake. Start prevention even earlier– say modern nutritionists.The modern western diet is not a healthy diet. It promotes obesity, raised BP and cholesterol and results in heart attack and diabetes. Conversely the traditional Mediterranean diet is beneficial on all scores. Overall the following rule holds – Body weight is a balance between calories in and calories out whatever is the diet," adds Dr Dugal. The traditional mediterranean diet is high intake of Fresh vegetables Fruits and nuts Legumes Cereals Fish Olive oil Modest alcohol Low intake of Meat Products Dairy Products (Fatty)

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