Caution from leading cardiologists at The Hindu awareness meeting; most of heart attacks are man-made.

Three leading cardiologists in Madurai have jointly cautioned that smoking and taking wrong food are highly dangerous for one's life, particularly for the heart.

Their common appeal was that cigarette smokers must quit the habit immediately to come out of the high risk group since studies have found that tobacco represents the single most preventable cause of death worldwide.

If smokers were warned that there is no excuse, the three heart specialists were unanimous that eating right/balanced food in right quantity is equally important for a healthy heart functioning.

The cardiologists were speaking at the Mission Madurai Reader Connect event organised by The Hindu with the support of American College here on Saturday in association with the Tamil Nadu Chamber of Commerce and Industry and sponsored by Canara Bank.

A panel of heart specialists — G. Durairaj, senior cardiologist of Madurai Heart Centre (Bypass Road); A. Madhavan, interventional cardiologist, Apollo Speciality Hospitals, Madurai, and B. R. J. Kannan, interventional cardiologist, Vadamalayan Hospitals in the city — gave a comprehensive heart attack prevention strategy for the participants at the well attended awareness event on heart care. Dr. Madhavan said that heart attack came in the category of preventable death and smoking habit was a highly dangerous contributing risk factor.

“Eating more fruits and vegetables means less chances of heart disease. Sedentary lifestyle must be avoided and salt intake should be less in our daily food,” the Apollo heart specialist said.

In his power-point presentation on the rising epidemic of cardiovascular diseases, senior cardiologist Dr. Duraiaj has said that most of the heart attacks/cardiac problems are man-made and one shall have a healthy heart if risk factors are avoided.

“Smoking, diabetes, blood pressure, family history and sedentary lifestyle contribute to heart problems. Keep your blood pressure/cholesterol level under control, check diabetes, exercise regularly and those who smoke should give up. Have periodical consultation with your doctor,” he said.

No excuse

A wide range of questions on heart care issues were addressed by interventional cardiologist Dr. B.R.J. Kannan of Vadamalayan Hospitals here who urged people of all age groups to understand about modifiable risk factors.

“There is no excuse for smokers. Quitting smoking is the only way and it is an easy modifiable factor. Passive smoking too is very dangerous,” Dr.Kannan cautioned.

He told the audience who raised several queries on symptoms, precautions and treatment that one has to go for regular check-up for blood pressure/sugar and cholesterol since these three will not show any symptoms.

The three cardiologists have recommended that brisk walking for about 30 minutes every day and controlled/balanced diet- either vegetarian or non-vegetarian- and that too in limited quantity will have a positive bearing on heart functioning.

A wide of participants were there in the jam-packed air-conditioned auditorium of American College where questions were asked by old and the young. Diet tips and more precautions given by the doctors will be carried in the Madurai Matters column of The Hindu in the Monday issue of October 10.

R. Mohan, Acting Principal, American College, R. T. Christopher, college Bursar, S. Rethinavelu, senior president, Tamil Nadu Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and participants from various walks of life were among those who attended the Mission Madurai-Reader Connect event of The Hindu on Saturday.

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