“Each colour of fruit and vegetable has some kind of anti-oxidant which is heart-friendly and helps in anti-ageing”

Joggers and morning walkers at the Race Course area in Madurai had been given a menu of healthy tips to prevent heart attacks and cardiovascular diseases.

Just as they assembled to hear from the heart specialist on how to have a healthy heart on Sunday morning at the Jogging Club, A. Madhavan, interventional cardiologist at the Apollo Speciality Hospital in Madurai, had injected into them some simple practical tips to be followed.

The first caution from him was to be serious with salt and have a ‘colourful menu’ at home daily. “Your salt intake determines the health of your heart. In Finland, studies have proved that there was a substantial gross reduction in the number of heart diseases and stroke when people reduced salt intake in food. That Finland-formula is ideal for us also,” the heart specialist advised in his pep talk.

Then came the suggestion on what to eat: Dr.Madhavan, who is a specialist certified by the Zurich-based World Heart Federation, says that the food you eat must have five colours of fruits and vegetables every day for a healthy heart. “Each colour of fruit and vegetable has some kind of anti-oxidant which is heart-friendly and helps in anti-ageing. If you eat five different colours of vegetables and fruits daily, it is the best way to steer clear of cardiac problems,” he said during his interaction with walkers at the special meet organised by Voice Trust in connection with World Heart Day.

He pointed out the efforts being taken through the World Heart Congress to cut down the number of heart attacks by 25 per cent by the year 2025. For this to happen, the level of public awareness and participation becomes crucial.

The doctor strictly said that smoking is highly dangerous for heart and quitting that habit is a must. Regular check-up of diabetes and hypertension is important along with daily physical exercises to keep the body, especially the heart, hale and healthy.

Dr.Madhavan’s appeal to the government is to enforce anti-tobacco laws strictly and also bring in restrictions on salt usage in food products being sold. “The government will be able to reduce the burden of heart diseases in the country by implementing it. It will be ideal to start heart education right from the school level,” he suggests.

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