Simple. Clear. Easy to understand. Each of these symptoms could be a warning sign of a heart attack. Notice that the unique symptoms listed on the right of this CardioSmart infograpic excerpt are most commonly seen in women.
“Physicians, get out your prescription pads and prescribe this book to every one of your heart patients. This encouraging, common sense and easy-to-read book deserves to be in the hands of all freshly-diagnosed heart patients and those who love them.”
That’s the little blurb I wrote for Oregon cardiologist Dr. James Beckerman’s new book,Heart To Start.* As explained in last week’s book excerpt published here, Dr. B believes that heart disease is essentially a sitting disease. To rally against that, he embraces a profound belief that “exercise is medicine” – and this is especially important for all of us heart patients. In fact, he believes that physical exercise is the least prescribed yet most effective heart treatment. Far too many of us, however, get little or no regular physical activity – particularly while recuperating from a cardiac event – and instead insist on doing something that just might be dangerous to our health: we sit.
But Dr. Beckerman believes that what we most need to do is to move more. We were “born to walk”, he reminds us. And even if we weren’t born to walk, we sure weren’t born to be sitting around all day. Continue reading “Were you “born to walk”?”→
It’s not about your cholesterol numbers, and it’s not even about big fat blockages clogging up your coronary arteries. Did you know that inflammation is likely the culprit in most heart attacks? As cardiologist Dr. John Mandrola neatly describes it:
“Heart disease is about inflammation. The same mechanisms that cause the throat to swell from an infection, the skin to redden after an insect bite, and a scar to form after a cut are what cause heart problems.”
Because I’m a ridiculously early riser most days, I often find myself in the kitchen listening to those pre-dawn overseas radio broadcasts from the BBC or Deutsche Welle or Radio Australia while making my morning coffee. The latter gripped my bean-grinding attention at about 4:45 one morning recently when host Natasha Mitchell was interviewing clinical psychologist Dr. Richard Bryant.
Their conversation aired on her award-winning program on mental health issues, All In The Mind. Their topic, psychological debriefing to help Australia’s traumatized flood victims, contained many unexpected gems for those of us who have gone through other forms of traumatic events – like surviving a heart attack.