The death of legendary cricket Shane Warne has sent shockwaves across the world. A genius on the field and an enigma off the field, Warne leaves behind a cricketing legacy that will be very difficult to match. Warne was only 52 and was too young to die of a heart attack.
But instances of younger and seemingly fit people, including celebs, falling prey to heart attack is not unheard of, unfortunately. Former Indian captain and BCCI President Sourav Ganguly had suffered a mild heart attack and undergone a quick primary angioplasty last year to clear a blocked coronary artery.
While timely medical intervention prevented any bigger health crisis for Sourav, two young actors in their 40s passed away in 2021 following heart attacks. Popular Kannada actor Puneeth Rajkumar was 46 while Bollywood and TV actor Sidharth Shukla was only 40 when they succumbed to massive heart attacks.
In October 2021, following Puneeth’s death, we had spoken to Dr Viveka Kumar, Principal Director and Chief of Cath Labs, Max Healthcare, on seemingly young and ‘fit’ people suffering heart attacks and he had this to say: “What we must understand is there is a difference between being fit and being healthy. Healthy means not just physical fitness, but mental fitness too — keeping stress under control, a decent lifestyle, and adequate sleep are all very important.”
Dr Viveka Kumar listed out the following important points:
– Not every person who looks fit is healthy. Physical fitness has to be coupled with mental health, adequate sleep.
– Smoking is BAD for the heart. So is tobacco consumption in ANY form.
– Exercising is essential. One should walk more than 10,000 steps in 24 hours.
– Again, over-exercising is BAD. If you are walking more than 30,000 steps a day, continuously, it can be harmful. Exercise regularly, but in moderation.
– If you are walking less than 5,000 steps a day, you are leading a sedentary lifestyle and you are as much in danger of heart diseases as a smoker, even if you don’t smoke! If you smoke on top of that, do the math!!
– Adequate amount of sleep is very important — which is between 7 and 8 hours. Sleeping less than 6 hours and more than 10 hours, regularly, are both bad for health.
– Avoid excessive sugar and salt as they will lead to/aggravate diabetes and high blood pressure, which are directly linked to heart health.
– Yoga and meditation are important as stress is the biggest killer. Financial stress is one of the biggest kinds of stress. When it comes to celebs, even though they are physically fit, often fame and popularity bring in a huge amount of stress.
– Once you have crossed 40, regular health check ups are a must, even if you are seemingly or actually okay. Early detection and medication, preventive check-ups… all can save lives. If there’s a family history of diseases like heart attacks, start check ups from 35.
– Yes, men are more prone to heart diseases than women as hormones provide the latter a certain protection. However, this is no reason for anyone, man or woman, to take one’s heart health lightly!