Have a happy heart at work

Have a happy heart at work

Seventy percent of the Indian urban population is at a risk of developing cardiovascular diseases (CVD). 

There are a lot of lifestyle factors to blame for its increased incidences. For the majority of working population that has been diagnosed with CVD, or is at a risk of developing it, dealing with the condition can be quite a task. From the food you eat to the air you breathe, everything can potentially harm your health. 

It isn’t difficult to manage CVD though. Here are a few things you can do to create a heart-healthy environment at work:

n Avoid stress as much as you can. If you feel angry or frustrated, sit back, relax and take deep breaths. Put on some relaxing music or meditate till you calm down.

n Control your emotions. If you experience depression or frequent panic attacks, consult a psychologist. S/he can counsel you on how to deal with these emotions.

n  Avoid tobacco. Smoking or even being around a smoker will adversely affect your health, putting you at a higher risk of developing heart problems. You need to sensitise your co-workers. With them smoking around you, they put you at a higher risk; politely tell them so. 

n  Many assume that a heart condition means exercise is out of the question. It’s not. Some amount of exercise is necessary to manage weight, lower cholesterol, relieve stress and control diabetes. You can start with light cardio or walking in the park for half an hour or 45 minutes, daily.

n  Office canteens and long work hours mean a lot of junk food. Avoid it. Eat a lot of fresh, green veggies and fruits, legumes and whole grains. Maintain a low-cholesterol and low-fat diet.

n  Avoid working non-stop at your desk. Take regular breaks. Make sure you get in at least 30 minutes of exercise daily. 
(The writer is HOD, Cardiology, Sri Balaji Action Medical Institute, Delhi)