Heart smart tips-be heart smart even during lockdown- Dr HS Bedi
The lockdown period is a period of extraordinary stress for all systems of the body especially the heart .The risk of having a heart attack during an enforced lockdown can go up because of the sudden inactivity, inappropriate diet and depression . Sitting cooped up at home can cause a variant of Seasonal affective disorder (appropriately acronymed as SAD) which can precipitate a heart attack. Also there may be a delay in seeking treatment.
So does this mean you have to fear the lockdown and wait for a heart attack ?
Not at all !! .
In fact – this is the perfect opportunity to shake off a few old habits and develop new robust ones – a lockdown is just the right time to develop a lifetime healthy habit .
- Get active . It improves your immunity .I know this can be difficult because of the curfew like condition . Take walks in the house , on the roof or in your local garden in the house . Daily chores of dusting, sweeping etc can be shared – they all add up to calories burnt . Stand or walk when on the phone
- If you have space – create a small gym using simple props – improvised weights , chairs ,mats, a cycle etc . You can follow an online trainer – there are a number of apps . Squats , push ups , plank, lunges etc can all be done without any equipment .
- Take up yoga . There are a number of TV shows and apps which can guide you .
- Connect with your inner self . Discard negative thoughts .Meditate. Rejuvenate
- This is the perfect time to spend quality time with your family T. Get to know your spouse better . Play with your children. Watch TV together . Have conversations with your parents . Learn dancing with your kids – they are the best teachers .
- Eat a prudent diet low in saturated fats and calories. Eat lots of fresh seasonal fruits and green leafy vegetables – they are all easily available at your doorstep. Avoid fatty fried and non vegetarian food .
- Avoid tobacco , coffee , tea or alcohol . They increase blood pressure and rhythm irregularity .
- Stop and smell the roses . This is the best time you will ever get . Take up gardening esp now as your gardener may not be able to come
- Know and manage your blood pressure and blood sugar – both need to be under strict control. Consult online
- Don’t ignore symptoms if you are feeling unwell. All of us doctors now offer online consultation – this is now officially allowed by the authorities (earlier it was not ) . Avoid trips to the hospital unless there is an emergency .
- Let The Sunshine In – sit in the sun – this improves your levels of Vit D and reduces SAD
- Take your medication as recommended
- Do not believe in the innumerable ‘sure shot’ therapies you get on whattsapp – check with your doctor
Heart smart tips-be heart smart even during lockdown- Dr HS Bedi. If you follow these simple tips – you can actually enjoy this otherwise morbid situation we are in . And when this is over – it will be – trust me – you and your heart will be fit as a fiddle.
The writer is Dr Harinder Singh Bedi MCh, FIACS (Gold Medallist) Director , Cardio Vascular Endovascular & Thoracic Sciences Ivy Hospital, Mohali, Punjab. He was earlier at the St Vincents Hospital in Australia and the Escorts Heart Institute , New Delhi. . Email: firstname.lastname@example.org . Ph 98140-60480