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Dr K K Aggarwal

Don’t ignore women’s health

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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Women are not diagnosed or treated as aggressively as men. Even though more women than men die of heart disease each year, women receive only 33% of all angioplasties, stents and bypass surgeries; 28% of implantable defibrillators and 36% of open-heart surgeries, according to the National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease. Although the traditional risk factors for coronary artery disease — such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure and obesity — have a detrimental impact in men and women, certain factors play a bigger role in the development of heart disease in women.

  • Metabolic syndrome — a combination of increased blood pressure, high blood glucose and triglycerides — has a greater impact on women than men.
  • Mental stress and depression affect womens hearts more than they do mens.
  • Smoking is much worse for women than men.
  • Low estrogen level before menopause is a significant risk factor for developing microvascular disease.
  • Though women will often have some chest pain or discomfort, it may not be the most prominent symptom. Diffuse plaque build-up and diseased smaller arteries are two reasons why symptoms can be different in women.
  • In addition to chest pain, pressure or discomfort, signs and symptoms of heart attack in women include: Neck, shoulder, upper back or abdominal discomfort; shortness of breath; nausea or vomiting; sweating; light-headedness or dizziness and unusual fatigue.
  • Endothelial dysfunction is more common in women. In this, the lining of the artery does not expand (dilate) properly to boost blood flow during activity, which increases the risk of coronary artery spasm and sudden death.
  • WISE study results suggest that the commonly used treatments for coronary artery disease — angioplasty and stenting — are not the best options for women with more diffuse plaques.
  • Typical tests for coronary artery disease — angiogram, treadmill testing and others — are not reliable in women.
  • The WISE study showed that in some women, plaques accumulate as an evenly spread layer along artery walls, which is not visible using traditional testing methods.

A slight move is all that matters

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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Middle-aged women who move around more in their daily life have lower levels of intra-abdominal fat, a risk factor for heart disease.
A minor modification in daily routine: Reducing the time watching TV or increasing the walk time to work can make a difference in the long-term health.
Visceral fat is a hot topic because of metabolic syndrome, which predisposes people to diseases.
Intra-abdominal fat, or the fat that wraps around the organs in the abdomen and chest, tends to accumulate at midlife and can contribute to developing diabetes, hypertension and heart disease. The fat around the organs is known to be more related to heart disease and diabetes. A woman does not need to appear outwardly heavy to have a potentially troublesome extra “tire” around her organs.
Exercise for long has been known to reduce the amount of intra-abdominal fat.

Traditionally, we recognize Raksha Bandhan as a bond of love between a brother and a sister. Rakhi is synonymous with purity of the relationship. The tying of the rakhi also denotes the brother’s vow to protect his sister. The Raksha Bandhan festival represents the spirit of fraternity. It is a traditional way to celebrate the unconditional love between siblings. The word ‘Raksha’ means protection and ‘Bandhan’ signifies bondage. Rakhi is a sacred that sister ties on her brother’s wrist to protect him from all types of negativity in life. The brother also vows to protect his loving sister by offering her a suitable gift. This festival that glorifies precious emotions of love, care and affection Give your sister the precious gift of good health on this Raksha Bandhan. Gift her a health checkup package. Share love not sweets. Sweets are rich in trans-fats and refined carbohydrates. Trans-fats increase LDL or the bad cholesterol and lower HDL or the healthy cholesterol and increase the risk for diseases like heart attack. Sweets that are made of hydrogenated fats are rich in trans-fats. Also, do not gift chocolates as they are rich in refined sugar and saturated fats. They can be harmful to the health. Chocolates can increase the chances of fatty liver, abdominal obesity and metabolic syndrome. Give dry fruits, jaggery chana, sattu, fruits instead of sweets, chocolates and cookies. All women needs iron an proteins. Jaggery is high in iron and chana (black gram) in proteins. Sattu is the natural healthy fast food and good for the health. Fresh fruits are health friendly. One should eat atleast 3-5 servings of fruits every day, Dry fruits are protective as they have high contents of natural vitamin E. The views and opinions expressed in the text are entirely my personal views.

Don’t Ignore Women’ Health

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Women are not diagnosed or treated as aggressively as men. Even though more women than men die of heart disease each year, women receive only 33% of all angioplasties, stents and bypass surgeries; 28% of implantable defibrillators and 36% of open-heart surgeries, according to the National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease.

Although the traditional risk factors for coronary artery disease — such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure and obesity — have a detrimental impact in men and women, certain factors play a bigger role in the development of heart disease in women.

  1. Metabolic syndrome — a combination of increased blood pressure, elevated blood glucose and triglycerides — has a greater impact on women than men.
  2. Mental stress and depression affect women’s hearts more than they do men’s.
  3. Smoking is much worse for women than men.
  4. A low level of estrogen before menopause is a significant risk factor for developing microvascular disease.
  5. Though women will often have some chest pain or discomfort, it may not be the most prominent symptom. Diffuse plaques build-up and diseased smaller arteries are two reasons why symptoms can be different in women.
  6. In addition to chest pain, pressure or discomfort, signs and symptoms of heart attack in women include: Neck, shoulder, upper back or abdominal discomfort, Shortness of breath, Nausea or vomiting, Sweating, Light-headedness or dizziness and unusual fatigue.
  7. Endothelial dysfunction is more common in women. In this the lining of the artery does not expand (dilate) properly to boost blood flow during activity, which increases the risk of coronary artery spasm and sudden death.
  8. WISE study results suggest that the commonly used treatments for coronary artery disease — angioplasty and stenting — are not the best option for women with more diffuse plaques.
  9. Typical tests for coronary artery disease — angiogram, treadmill testing and others — are not reliable in women.
  10. The WISE study showed that in some women, plaques accumulate as an evenly spread layer along artery walls, which is not visible using traditional testing methods.