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What are the thumb rules for a layman to take care of his heart?

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*A chat with Dr. Devi Shetty, Narayana Hrudayalaya (Famous Heart Specialist) Bangalore, was arranged by WIPRO for its employees. The transcript of the chat is given below. Useful for everyone.*

*Qn1.* What are the thumb rules for a layman to take care of his heart?
*Ans:*
1. Diet - Less of carbohydrate, more of protein, less oil
2. Exercise - Half an hour's walk, at least five days a week;
3. Quit smoking
4. Control weight
5. Control BP - Blood pressure and Sugar

*Qn2.* Can we convert fat into muscles?

*Ans:* It is a dangerous myth. Fat and muscles are made of two different tissues, fat is fat ... Ugly and harmful... Muscle is muscle. Fat can never be converted into a muscle.

*Qn3.* It's still a grave shock to hear that some apparently healthy person
gets a cardiac arrest. How do we understand it in perspective?

*Ans:* This is called silent attack; that is why we recommend everyone past the age of 30 to undergo routine health checkups.

*Qn4.* Are heart diseases hereditary?

Ans: Yes.

*Qn5.* What are the ways in which the heart is stressed? What practices do you suggest to de-stress?

*Ans:* Change your attitude towards life. Do not look for perfection in everything in life.

*Qn6.* Is walking better than jogging or is more intensive exercise required to keep a healthy heart?

*Ans:* Walking is better than jogging, since jogging leads to early fatigue and injury to joints.

*Qn7.* You have done so much for the poor and needy. What has inspired you to do so?

*Ans:*   *MOTHER THERESA*, who was my patient.

*Qn8.* Can people with low blood pressure suffer heart diseases?

*Ans:* Extremely rare.

*Qn9.* Does cholesterol accumulate right from an early age (I'm currently only 22) or do you have to worry about it only after you are above 30 years of age?

*Ans:* Cholesterol accumulates from childhood.

*Qn10.* How do irregular eating habits affect the heart ?

*Ans:* You tend to eat junk food when the habits are irregular and your body's enzyme release for digestion gets confused.

*Qn11.* How can I control cholesterol content without using medicines?

*Ans:* Control diet, walk and eat walnut.

*Qn12.* Which is the best and worst food for the heart?

*Ans:* Fruits and vegetables are the best and oil is the worst.

*Qn13.* Which oil is better - groundnut, sunflower, olive?

*Ans:* Oils do no good for humans.

*Qn14.* What is the routine checkup one should go through? Is there any specific test?

Ans: Routine blood test to ensure sugar, cholesterol is ok. Check BP, Treadmill test after an echo.

*Qn15.* What are the first aid steps to be taken on a heart attack?

*Ans:* Help the person into a sleeping position, place an aspirin tablet under the tongue with a sorbitrate tablet if available, and rush him to a coronary care unit, since the maximum casualty takes place within the first hour.

*Qn17.* What is the main cause of a steep increase in heart problems amongst youngsters? I see people of about 30-40 yrs of age having heart attacks and serious heart problems.

*Ans*: Increased awareness has increased incidents. Also, sedentary lifestyles, smoking, junk food, lack of exercise in a country where people are genetically three times more vulnerable for heart attacks than Europeans and Americans.

*Please, don't hoard knowledge.*
*It takes sharing of knowledge to discover and understand the world in which we live. Do send it to all your friends and relatives.*

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