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Why does the risk of heart-related problems increases in winter



Heart-related problems are one of the leading causes of death in the world. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), cardiovascular diseases account for around 17.9 million deaths yearly, about 31% of all global deaths. Heart problems are any disorder that affects the normal functioning of the heart. Common heart problems include coronary artery disease, heart attack, arrhythmia, heart failure, and congenital heart defects. During the winter months, many people experience symptoms of a heart attack like chest pain and an increase in their risk of heart-related problems.


Types of heart problems

A heart problem is any condition that affects the functioning of the heart. Heart-related issues can be broadly categorized into two types: 


Structural heart problems: 

These heart problems are physical defects in the heart, such as congenital heart defects, coronary heart disease, heart valve disease, rhythm disturbances, and cardiomyopathy. 


Functional heart problems:

These heart problems, such as high blood pressure, congestive heart failure, and arrhythmia, affect heart functioning.


However, some of the common heart problems which are commonly affected in winter are:


  1. Coronary artery disease 
  2. Congestive heart failure 
  3. Arrhythmias 
  4. Cardiomyopathy
  5. Heart valve disease 
  6. Heart attack 
  7. Stroke 
  8. Pericarditis 
  9. Aortic aneurysm 
  10. Pulmonary embolism


If you have symptoms of heart attack or any of the above ten problems, you must be very careful during the winter. 


Causes of heart problems


Various factors, including lifestyle, medical conditions, genetics, and environmental factors, can cause heart problems. The causes of heart problems vary, such as smoking, lack of physical activity, unhealthy diet, and excessive alcohol consumption. Common causes of heart problems include high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, obesity, smoking, and a sedentary lifestyle. Other causes may include genetic conditions, certain medications, and certain infections. Signs of a heart attack in women are commonly seen during their 40s and above. To know the facts about heart attacks. 


Heart attack symptoms and remedies 

  • Factors affecting heart patients


Several factors can affect the risk of heart-related problems in an individual. These include age, gender, ethnicity, family history, and lifestyle factors. Some of the everyday activities that affect heart patients are:


  1. Smoking: Smoking increases the risk of heart attack and stroke and can worsen the symptoms of heart disease. Quitting smoking can help to reduce the risk and improve overall heart health.


  1. Diet: Healthy, balanced diet is essential for heart patients. Eating foods low in saturated fat and cholesterol, and fiber, such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, helps lower cholesterol and reduce the risk of heart disease.


  1. Medications: Taking prescribed medications can help to manage blood pressure and cholesterol levels, reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke, and prevent complications of heart disease. It is essential to take medications as prescribed and follow up with a doctor. 


  1. Exercise: Regular physical activity can help to lower blood pressure, manage weight, and reduce the risk of heart disease. Even moderate activity, such as walking, can have a positive effect.


  1. Alcohol: Drinking too much alcohol can increase the risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, and stroke. It is important to drink moderately and keep alcohol consumption to recommended levels.


  1. Stress: Stress can increase blood pressure and worsen the symptoms of heart disease. Managing stress through relaxation techniques, such as yoga or meditation, can help to reduce the risk of heart disease.


  1. People with a family history of heart-related problems, such as coronary heart disease or stroke, are also at an increased risk.

  • How does winter affect heart problems?


During the winter months, many people experience an increase in their risk of heart-related problems. This is due to several factors, including cold weather, changes in air pressure, and lack of physical activity. Cold weather can constrict blood vessels, making the heart work harder and increasing the risk of heart-related problems. 


Changes in air pressure can also increase the risk of heart-related problems, as air pressure can cause the heart to beat faster. Finally, people tend to be less physically active during the winter months, which can increase the risk of heart-related problems. 

  • Heart problem preventive measures for winter


  1. Get Regular Exercise: Regular physical activity can help keep your heart healthy and reduce your risk of heart disease. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate exercises, such as walking, jogging, or biking, at least five days a week. 


  1. Get Plenty of Sleep: Getting enough quality sleep is essential for keeping your heart healthy. Restful sleep for 7-8 hours daily is beneficial.


  1. Stay Hydrated: Staying hydrated is essential for your heart health. Avoid caffeine and alcohol in your diet, rather plenty of water can help a lot.


  1. Manage Stress: Stress can affect your heart health. Practicing yoga, meditation, and similar breathing exercise can help manage stress.


  1. Stay Warm: Cold temperatures can strain your heart. Make sure to bundle up during the winter months and stay warm.


  1. Eat a Healthy Diet: Eating a heart-healthy diet is essential to keeping your heart and cardiovascular system healthy. Eat enough fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, whole grains, and healthy fats. Avoid processed and refined foods, as well as saturated and Trans fats. 


Treatment of heart problems depends on the underlying cause and may include lifestyle changes, medications, or surgery. Book and appointment with the best Cardiology Doctor Praveen Chandra in Gurugram.




People must be aware of the potential risks associated with heart-related problems and take the necessary steps to reduce the risk of developing such issues. If you are addicted to smoking and alcohol along with the problem of high blood pressure, you must opt for a regular checkup at Medanta. 


Medanta Medical Team
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