Did you know that the risk for having a heart attacks is twice as high in the winter as in the summer? Not only that, but more people die from winter heart attacks than summer ones.
Only some of the reasons are linked to the cold weather.
When the body gets cold the blood vessels narrow to prevent heat loss. But in persons whose arteries are clogged with plaque this can trigger a heart attack. Your blood pressure increases when the arteries narrow too. Bundle up!
Shoveling snow brings on lots of heart attacks. It is very strenuous work. The heart pumps harder, and this also raises blood pressure. If possible, push the snow rather than lift it. And take frequent breaks.
Try not to overdo the New Year's fitness resolutions. Check with your doctor to be sure you don't take on too strenuous a regimen.
The holiday season itself can be very stressful. Anxiety, loneliness and depression are also linked to heart attacks.
Not only is there all that holiday stress, but there's all that holiday food! Try eating all those treats and fatty foods with a little more moderation.
Get some sun! The short daylight hours of winter can cause mood problems. Also, vitamin D comes from sunlight, and heart attack victims have lower levels of vitamin D than the healthy portion of the population.
Getting a flu shot can cut your heart attack risk. The flu causes all sorts of changes in your body, and none of them is good for your heart.
read the full article at the Caregiver's Hotline, "Caution: Winter is Prime Time for Heart Attacks", by Jim Miller, Jan 2, 2008
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