December 25th is the Start of 3 Days of Highest Death Rates
The #1 Killer in the USA is heart disease and kills every 36 seconds. That number is highest during three days of the year. There are things you can do to prevent it from happening. Smart Health Talk would like to save a life this holiday season.
A trigger for more deaths on these days can be the extra stress that comes during the winter months, and this year December 26th falls on a Monday, the day of the week when most heart attacks happen so a double risk factor, but there are also others and if you are going to protect yourself you need to know them.
Heart attacks are the #1 killer with someone dying every 36 seconds according to the American Health Association. Smart Health Talk wants to try and prevent some of those unnecessary deaths by providing some important tips. We already have a webpage that outlines heart attack symptoms which are differerent for men and women. Most important, don't ignore them and call 911 even if you are unsure or go to a clinic to get checked out. Find out what to do if your alone and the symptoms here: http://www.smarthealthtalk.com/
Some people feel the holidays is the only time they can have certain foods and so pig out on a years worth in a couple of days. When you spend a whole day consuming larger amounts than usual of these foods you could very well loosen that plague that has been building up throughout your lifetime in your arteries, and give it a chance to form a clot that cuts off most of the oxygen carrying blood to your heart and the heart muscle starts to die. At that point every minute counts.
When you eat certain high fat foods, blood fat also increases.
Some my hestitate to seed help because they have traveled to be with their families and friends, or are busy hosting a party and when they start to feel bad they don't want to complain and ruin everyones fun so they dismiss their symptoms.
How would you like to reduce your risk of a heart attack or stroke by 50% not only on these high risk days, but everyday? Do this:
- DRINK WATER and try and avoid alcohol and other dehydrating drinks such as energy drinks or those containing lots of caffeine. Go to the link below to find out more about how drinking plain water can save your life everyday.
- Stay away from tobacco smoke.
- Find the fiber and avoid the bad fats from fried, fast, and junk food, processed and high sugar foods.
- If you are having refined carbs, which includes beverages like juice (conventional is concentrated with pesticides) where the fiber has been removed, alcoholic drinks, processed grains/flours in the form of Christmas cookies, cakes, sodas, and sugar as well as snacks such as chips, pretzels and such make sure you also have a high fiber source such as chia seeds or other fiber containing food products at the same time. Hummus or bean dip with your chips has more fiber than creme based dips. By making your blood sugar rise and spike quickly over and over you are literally teaching your body to be a diabetic.
- Go for a walk before or after you eat. Take a tip from our interview with Sustainable Santa. He recommends parents trade exercise minutes for TV minutes. Think it would be a good idea for adults to listen to Santa on this one.
- Relax and enjoy the day off, and make the most of time with friends and family no matter. If you feel the stress, frustration, or anger creeping in the immedate response can be a rise in blood pressure. Damage is possible everytime it happens. First a crack in an artery wall, then the repair with foam cells, next the slow build up that happens around the sticky site of repair that attempted to plug a hole in the dam, and then full blockage. If you have ever blown up a balloon repeatedly and then let out the air you will see how the plastic gets thinner and thinner, making it easier to break open. So it is with your veins and arteries.
- Ask yourself when you feel the stress, "Is this worth dying over?" Most of the time time no way. Use bio feedback and get your brain to help your body to relax and not let something ridiculous set you up for a heart attack later. Say the word "relax" as you take deep breathes and slowing exhale.
- See some of your favorite dishes and/or sweets and want to try them all? Use the three bite rule. Have a taste, but stop at three bites. When you eat those bites, take your time and savor every bite to the fullest with no guilt.
- Remember how great it is to be alive.
Go to this link below to find more information on how drinking more water can prevent a heart attack as well as additional information on symptoms of a heart attack and how to protect yourself during the holidays and year long by making good lifestyle choices including more organic foods..
Smart Health Talk Host Elaine McFadden, MPH, RD