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Important Things Every Woman Should Know - Jupiter Hospital

Her Heart Health: Important Things Every Woman Should Know

Over the past two decades, heart diseases have become very common, and these affect people irrespective of their age or gender. Heart diseases are becoming a growing concern as this happens to be one of the leading causes of mortality worldwide. If we talk about women alone, almost 1 out of 3 women is living with some sort of heart problem. Not only this, heart diseases are responsible for one in five female deaths. Various Studies and Research conducted over the years have clearly indicated that there are slight gender-based differences in heart diseases. Experts from the best heart hospital in Kolkata suggest that there are certain heart problems that specifically, or predominantly affect women.  

Though you must have read many blogs and articles related to general heart health, in this blog, we are specifically going to talk about some important facts related to female heart health that every woman out there should know about. 

The symptoms of heart attack and of the same for men and women – Yes, it is true. Women can have a completely different experience when having a heart attack. While chest pain is a common sign experienced by both genders, women may also experience certain atypical symptoms alongside. These include breathlessness, fatigue and feeling nauseated. As many women don’t know about these symptoms, they tend to take them lightly. It is very important to seek immediate help if you are experiencing symptoms like nausea/vomiting, breathlessness, back pain, dizziness, jaw pain, lower chest discomfort, upper abdominal pain and severe fatigue. 

Chest pain in women can be a result of microvascular diseases – We usually focus on the functioning of the large blood vessels present in the heart, however, it is pertinent to note that chest pain in women can also be caused by problems in the small blood vessels. Such problems are usually overlooked and these require more detailed evaluation and assessment. Such small blood vessels are commonly referred to as microvasculature. Problems in these can be triggered by underline conditions like hypertension or diabetes. Excessive smoking is also a contributing factor. These small blood vessels are very important for ensuring the proper circulation of blood in the body. If they fail to function efficiently, it can result in a deficiency of oxygenated blood in the body. 

Pregnancy complications can increase the risks of various heart ailments – During pregnancy, a woman can face many complications that can, directly or indirectly, increase susceptibility to various heart diseases. These complications include preeclampsia, gestational hypertension, gestational diabetes, and preterm delivery. If you have experienced any such problem during your pregnancy, it is important to seek proper medical help and go for regular screenings to ensure the safety and wellbeing of your heart. 

You can lower your risk of heart diseases – Most heart diseases are a result of unhealthy lifestyle practices and eating habits. Best cardiologist in Kolkata suggest that making healthy changes can significantly help to lower the risks. For this, you need to keep the following things in mind:

  • Keep your cholesterol and sugar under control
  • Make healthy dietary modifications
  • Get rid of extra pounds a bodyweight
  • Stay physically active 
  • Keep your blood pressure under check
  • Refrain from smoking

Women are at higher risk of heart diseases post menopause – The estrogen present in our body plays a vital role in protecting our heart against various diseases, as it helps to increase HDL and lower the levels of LDL. As a woman hits menopause, her oestrogen levels drop significantly, thereby increasing her vulnerability to various heart diseases. 

Women often tend to ignore the symptoms and take their heart health for granted. It is important to spread awareness and educate yourself and others around you, as your vigilance can save a life. If you wish to know more about your heart health or want to get yourself evaluated, you should definitely consult the experts from the best cardiac hospital in Kolkata.

Food That Should be Avoided by Heart Failure Patients - BM Birla Hospital

Food That Should be Avoided by Heart Failure Patients

Heart failure or congestive heart failure is a condition marked by the inability of the heart muscles to pump blood efficiently. This could be due to a plethora of reasons, the most common of which is coronary heart disease. Irrespective of what the name suggests, heart failure does not mean that your heart completely fails to work, but rather it is too weak to carry out its function of pumping blood throughout the body efficiently. Treatment for heart failure is offered at all the best cardiac hospitals in Kolkata

Life is definitely not easy for patients living with heart failure and the need to make a lot of changes in the day to day habits as well as dietary modifications to ensure a better quality of life and prevent their condition from aggravating any further. Diet, especially, plays a major role as it helps to strengthen your heart muscles and might even aid in reversing the damage to some extent. The best cardiologists in Kolkata highly recommend healthy dietary changes to patients suffering from heart failure. 

Now, it is important to understand that when we talk about making healthy dietary changes, it not only means eating healthy but also avoiding those foods that can have a negative impact on your heart. In this blog, we are specifically going to talk about those foods that heart failure patients should refrain from eating, with the help of the top cardiologists in Kolkata

Alcohol – The harmful effects of excessive alcohol consumption are known to all. The heart muscles of a heart failure patient are already very weak and drinking alcohol can worsen the problem by further aggravating the condition of the heart muscles. Hence it is better to avoid all forms of alcohol, including red wine. 

Salt – Excessive salt consumption is known to promote unhealthy fluid retention in even a normal healthy person, let alone someone who is suffering from a serious condition like heart failure. This can give rise to serious complications and even cause the patient’s blood pressure to spike up. High sodium diets usually contain high amounts of fats and calories which can lead to obesity. No doubt lowering your sodium intake can be difficult at first as food just seems to be bland without salt, however, once you get used to it, there’s no looking back. You can try by removing salt Shaker from your dining table or try healthy, low sodium recipes. You can also replace salt with healthy Herbs and Spices that are easily available in the market. If you are buying canned foods, make sure they have no added salt in them. 

Processed grains – Highly processed grains and products made of it, such as white pasta, white rice and white bread have been associated with various health issues. The processing of these grains lowers the fibre present in them and as such, these are loaded with carbs which are known to cause problems like type 2 diabetes and high cholesterol. You can instead try products made of whole grains, as they are rich in nutrition and fibre. 

Processed meat – As mentioned earlier, sodium is not good for your heart health and cured & processed meat contain high levels of sodium. These are also rich in fats that can promote atherosclerosis. So it is better to avoid red meat and eat white meat and fish instead. The latter is rich in Omega 3 fatty acids and low in saturated fats, making it very healthy for your heart.

If you want to know more about heart failure and get a personalized diet plan, consult the experts from the best heart hospital in Kolkata. 

Early Signs of Heart Attack When to See a Doctor - BM Birla Hospital

Early Signs of Heart Attack: When to See a Doctor?

As heart attacks tend to be very sudden and intense and can be fatal, symptoms and signs that are associated with a heart attack should not be taken lightly. If you doubt that your heart’s health is deteriorating and you are experiencing the symptoms mentioned in this article, you should consult the best heart doctor in Kolkata as soon as possible as matters related to the heart should not be taken lightly. One of the reasons there are so many cases of heart attack is that most symptoms do not even happen in the chest and it doesn’t even come to a person’s mind that what they’re experiencing could be because of a heart-related issue. This is why it becomes important you recognise the signs and symptoms related to a heart attack.

Experts from the best cardiac centre in Kolkata suggest that being overweight, having diabetes, having high cholesterol, or having high blood pressure, are all risk factors. This means if you have any of these morbidities then the chances of you getting a heart attack are more than a person who does not have these problems. Thus, it becomes important to maintain overall health and fitness in order to take care of the heart properly and reduce the chances of getting heart-related problems.

If you experience any of the following mentioned signs or symptoms you should consult your doctor as prevention is always better than cure. Recognising these symptoms at an early age can be a boon and end up saving someone’s life:

1. Chest discomfort: chest discomfort and pain ought to be the most common symptom of heart-related problems. If you feel pain, tightness, or pressure in your chest for a few minutes you should not take it lightly as it is a sign of a blocked artery or a heart attack. It can happen anytime, whether you are resting or physically active.

But it’s not as common a symptom among women as many women experience heart attacks without any pain.

2. If you experience nausea, indigestion, heartburn, or

stomach pain could be because of heart-related issues. Even though an upset stomach is not what one would usually link to a heart attack, having these symptoms could be a sign of heart-related problems especially in women.

3. Feeling dizzy or lightheaded: though one may feel lightheaded because of many reasons, however, if dizziness is experienced with shortness of breath you should call the doctor right away.

4. You have started to get exhausted easily: if you get exhausted after doing a physical activity that was not a problem for you earlier, you may be having heart-related problems. 

5. Pain that spreads to the arm: pain that radiates from the chest and spreads down the body and especially towards the arm on the latest side is another classic sign of heart-related problems.

6. Cold sweat: cold sweat because of no reason could be a sign you’re experiencing a heart attack and should not be taken lightly and a doctor should be called right away.

7.  Throat or jaw pain: Throat or jaw pain can happen because of multiple reasons but if you experience pain that starts from the chest and expands to your throat or jaw then a doctor should be called immediately as you might be experiencing a heart attack.

8. Persistent cough: though this is not very common, it happens when blood is unable to function properly and starts leaking blood into the lungs

9. Snoring: Snoring puts extra pressure on the heart and therefore if you snore really loudly or as if gasping for air, a doctor should be consulted immediately.

10. Swollen feet, ankles and legs: When the heart doesn’t pump blood fast enough it gets backed up in the veins, leading to bloating. Also, heart failure makes it difficult for kidneys to function and kidneys become unable to remove excess water and sodium which also leads to bloating.

11. Irregular heartbeat: another sign of heart attack is an irregular heartbeat that lasts longer than a few seconds and is not because of excitement or nervousness or any other reason.

If you are planning to get a pacemaker in Kolkata, you should definitely consult an expert today. 

What is Aortic Stenosis and What Causes It - BM Birla Hospital

What is Aortic Stenosis and What Causes It?

Experts from the best heart hospital in Kolkata usually define aortic stenosis as a condition in which the valves of the heart become narrow, resulting in lesser blood flow to the heart.

The heart has four valves and they are mitral valve, tricuspid valve, pulmonary valve and aortic valve.  These valves play an important role by pumping the right amount of blood in the right direction. These valves have flaps that are called cusps or leaflets that open and close during each heartbeat and if they don’t open properly or on time the blood flow gets blocked or reduced.

When the aortic valve between the lower left heart chamber and the aorta does not open completely it’s called aortic stenosis.

When the aortic valve opening is narrowed, the heart has to work harder in order to pump enough blood into the aorta and to the rest of the body. This extra work can cause the left ventricle to enlarge and become thicker which can put a lot of strain on the heart and also cause weakened heart muscle. As it makes it difficult for the heart to pump blood and it can also cause chest pain, fainting, and heart failure leading to shortness of breath. Experts specializing in TAVI surgery in Kolkata suggest that a severe case of aortic stenosis can even cause death.

Mentioned below are the main causes of aortic stenosis:

1. Congenital heart defects: an aortic valve has three cusps or leaflets but sometimes children are born with an aortic valve that has one, two, or four cusps which can lead to narrowing and leak. It then has to be repaired or replaced. This condition requires regular checkups and should not be taken lightly at all even though the defect may not cause any problems till adulthood as it can be fatal if the valve begins to narrow or leak.

2. Calcium buildup on the valve: calcium is a mineral found in your blood and as blood repeatedly flows over the aortic valve, calcium deposits can build up on the heart valve leaflets. This buildup can cause the leaflets to become stiff, gradually reducing their ability to completely open and close.

3. Rheumatic fever: strep throat at times leads to rheumatic fever, which can lead to scar tissue formation within the heart. This makes it difficult for the aortic valve to narrow down or to open and close normally. Scar tissue can also create a rough surface which can lead to calcium deposits.

4. Radiation Therapy: sometimes people develop inflammation and scar tissue after they receive radiation therapy. Inflammation and scarring can make the aortic valve stiff which can make it difficult to function.

TAVI surgeons in Kolkata suggest that the treatment depends on how severe the condition is. Symptoms usually occur when the condition is serious. Some people with aortic stenosis do not experience symptoms till their condition becomes critical.

Signs and symptoms that one should look out for are abnormal heart sound or heart murmur heard through a stethoscope, rapid and fluttering heartbeat or palpitations, feeling faint or dizzy or fainting with activity, shortness of breath when active, pain or tightness in chest with activity, fatigue during times of increased activity. One should not take these symptoms lightly and consult the doctor as soon as possible as this condition can be fatal.

Some Ways To Tackle The Hurdles To A Healthy Heart - BM Birla Hospital

Some Ways To Tackle The Hurdles To A Healthy Heart

With the increasing incidence of various heart diseases and ailments, it has become extremely important to resort to a healthy and heart-friendly lifestyle, however, all of us have one reason or the other for hogging on unhealthy food or skipping activities that help us stay fit. Well, who wouldn’t want to grab a burger while walking past their favourite fast food restaurant, or skip the gym to watch their favourite series? While some reasons are valid, others are mere excuses to justify why you are not able to overcome the various hurdles that keep you from making your heart healthy. 

As per the best cardiologists in Kolkata, the risks of various heart diseases can be significantly reduced by resorting to a healthy lifestyle however many people find it difficult to commit to such changes. Heart problems tend to be one of the leading causes of deaths worldwide and while some of these are beyond one’s control, others are a result of unhealthy lifestyle habits that we have inculcated in our day to day routine. Getting rid of a habit that has developed over years is not easy, but perseverance is the key. 

Everyone will tell you what to do and what not to do but we will tell you how to be consistent once you commit to a particular healthy routine. 

Tip 1 – Find a workout buddy 

People spend thousands to get a gym subscription and even go to the gym enthusiastically for the first few days, but only a few are persistent. Many people find reasons to quit the gym and get back to their stagnant routine. Maybe it’s because of work or you are finding it too hot to step outside and go to the gym. The thing is you don’t always need to go to the gym to work out and you can simply do it at home but for that, you need some sort of motivation. And who could be more motivating than a workout partner? Having a workout partner is one of the best things that you can do to avoid skipping the gym. When you have someone by your side, who is willing to accompany you in the journey towards making your heart healthier, to push you on every step and to never let you back down, it naturally boosts you to go an extra mile. 

Tip 2 – Setting up a daily reminder 

One may set up an active routine but following it every day can be a bit troublesome without a prompt. You need to set an alarm or a reminder to help you follow your routine. Since we all carry smartphones and watches, this has become a lot easier now. You can set up an alarm to remind you when to wake up, take your meals, exercise, or go for a walk. This way, you won’t have to blame your memory. 

Tip 3 – Make small changes first 

In the majority of cases, people, soon after deciding that they have to make healthy lifestyle changes, start indulging in rigorous activities and go hard on themselves, which only drains them out. Experts from the best cardiac hospital in Kolkata suggest that it is always a better idea to start with small changes and gradually increase the pace and intensity. Spending hours in the gym on the very first day or making abrupt and drastic changes in your diet is only going to affect your health in a negative way. The process is slow and you have to trust it. Rome was not built in a day after all. 

Tip 4 – Skip the elevator and choose the stairs 

As you are walking toward the elevator, look on the side and you will find a good set of stairs. You use them very rarely or maybe not at all. Elevators do save time and energy but adding a couple of extra minutes to climb up the stairs will help you strengthen your muscles, keep your weight under check and take you closer to having a healthy heart. The best heart doctors in Kolkata also recommend the patients take stairs instead of elevators and lifts.

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