A Chat with Dr. Devi Shetty (Heart Specialist) – VeryUseful!
Posted January 31, 2008on:
Bangalore was arranged by WIPRO for its employees.
The transcript of the chat is given below.
Useful for everyone.
Qn: What are the thumb rules for a layman to
take care of his heart?
1. Diet – Less of carbohydrate, more of
protein, less oil
2. Exercise – Half an hour’s walk, at least five days
a week; avoid lifts and avoid sitting for a longtime
3. Quit smoking
4. Control weight
5. Control blood pressure and sugar
Qn: Is eating non-veg food (fish) good for
Qn: It’s still a grave shock to hear that some
apparently healthy person gets a cardiac arrest.
How do we understand it in perspective?
Ans: This is called silent attack; that is why
we recommend everyone past the age of 30 to
undergo routine health checkups.
Qn: Are heart diseases hereditary?
Qn: What are the ways in which the heart is
stressed? What practices do you suggest to
Ans: Change your attitude towards life. Do
not look for perfection in everything in life.
Qn: Is walking better than jogging or is more
intensive exercise required to keep a healthy
Ans: Walking is better than jogging since
jogging leads to early fatigue and injury to joints
Qn: You have done so much for the poor and
needy. What has inspired you to do so?
Ans: Mother Theresa , who was my patient
Qn: Can people with low blood pressure suffer
Ans: Extremely rare
Qn: Does cholesterol accumulates right from an
early age (I’m currently only 22) or do you have to
worry about it only after you are above 30 years
Ans: Cholesterol accumulates from childhood.
Qn: How do irregular eating habits affect the heart ?
Ans: You tend to eat junk food when the habits are irregular and your body’s enzyme release for digestion gets confused.
Qn: How can I control cholesterol content without using medicines?
Ans: Control diet, walk and eat walnut.
Qn: Can yoga prevent heart ailments?
Ans: Yoga helps.
Qn: Which is the best and worst food for the heart?
Ans: Fruits and vegetables are the best and the worst is oil.
Qn: Which oil is better – groundnut, sunflower, olive?
Ans: All oils are bad .
Qn: What is the routine checkup one should go through? Is there any specific test?
Ans: Routine blood test to ensure sugar,cholesterol is ok. Check BP, Treadmill test after an echo.
Qn: What are the first aid steps to be taken on a heart attack?
Ans: Help the person into a sleeping position ,
place an aspirin tablet under the tongue with a
sorbitrate tablet if available, and rush him to a
coronary care unit since the maximum casualty
takes place within the first hour.
Qn: How do you differentiate between pain caused by a heart attack and that caused due to gastric trouble?
Ans: Extremely difficult without ECG.
Qn: What is the main cause of a steep increase in
heart problems amongst youngsters? I see people
of about 30-40 yrs of age having heart attacks
and serious heart problems.
Ans: Increased awareness has increased incidents.
Also, s edentary lifestyles, smoking, junk food, lack
of exercise in a country where people are genetically three times more vulnerable for heart attacks than Europeans and Americans.
Qn: Is it possible for a person to have BP outside the normal range of 120/80 and yet be perfectly healthy?
Qn: Marriages within close relatives can lead to heart problems for the child. Is it true?
Ans : Yes, co-sanguinity leads to congenital abnormalities and you may not have a software engineer as a child
Qn: Many of us have an irregular daily routine
and many a times we have to stay late nights
in office. Does this affect our heart ? What
precautions would you recommend?
Ans : When you are young, nature protects
you against all these irregularities. However,
as you grow older, respect the biological
Qn: Will taking anti-hypertensive drugs cause
some other complications (short / long term)?
Ans : Yes, most drugs have some side effects. However, modern anti-hypertensive drugs are extremely safe.
Qn: Will consuming more coffee/tea lead to heart attacks?
Ans : No.
Qn: Are asthma patients more prone to heart disease?
Ans : No.
Qn: How would you define junk food?
Ans : Fried food like Kentucky , McDonalds , samosas, and even masala dosas.
Qn: You mentioned that Indians are three times more vulnerable. What is the reason for this, as Europeans and Americans also eat a lot of junk food?
Ans: Every race is vulnerable to some disease and unfortunately, Indians are vulnerable for the most expensive disease.
Qn: Does consuming bananas help reduce hypertension?
Ans : No.
Qn: Can a person help himself during a heart attack (Because we see a lot of forwarded emails on this)?
Ans : Yes. Lie down comfortably and put an aspirin
tablet of any description under the tongue and ask
someone to take you to the nearest coronary care
unit without any delay and do not wait for the
ambulance since most of the time, the ambulance
does not turn up.
Qn: Do, in any way, low white blood cells and low hemoglobin count lead to heart problems?
Ans : No. But it is ideal to have normal hemoglobin level to increase your exercise capacity.
Qn: Sometimes, due to the hectic schedule we are not able to exercise.
So, does walking while doing daily chores at home or
climbing the stairs in the house, work as a substitute for exercise?
Ans : Certainly. Avoid sitting continuously for more than half an hour and even the act of getting out of the chair and going to another chair and sitting helps a lot.
Qn: Is there a relation between heart problems and blood sugar?
Ans: Yes. A strong relationship since diabetics are more vulnerable to heart attacks than non-diabetics.
Qn: What are the things one needs to take care of after a heart operation?
Ans : Diet, exercise, drugs on time , Control cholesterol, BP, weight.
Qn: Are people working on night shifts more vulnerable to heart disease when compared to day shift workers?
Ans : No.
Qn: What are the modern anti-hypertensive drugs?
Ans : There are hundreds of drugs and your
doctor will chose the right combination for your
problem, but my suggestion is to avoid the drugs
and go for natural ways of controlling blood
pressure by walk, diet to reduce weight and
changing attitudes towards lifestyles.
Qn: Does dispirin or similar headache pills increase
the risk of heart attacks?
Ans : No.
Qn: Why is the rate of heart attacks more in men
than in women?
Ans : Nature protects women till the age of 45.
Qn: How can one keep the heart in a good condition?
Ans : Eat a healthy diet, avoid junk food, exercise everyday,
do not smoke and, go for health checkups
if you are past the age of 30 ( once in six months recommended) ….
Share it with all your friends……. They might be benefitted……