DALLAS, Nov. 26, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- This holiday season the Dallas Division of the American Heart Association, the world's leading nonprofit organization focused on heart and brain health for all, and Medical City Healthcare are encouraging people to think about their health.
It can be tough to stay on track when it comes to health during the holiday season, whether it's sticking to a diet or maintaining an exercise regimen.
Such holiday-fueled pressures may also contribute to the fact that the holidays are also the most dangerous time of year for heart attacks.
Research shows deaths from heart attacks peak during December and January, possibly due to changes in diet and alcohol consumption, stress from family interactions, strained finances, along with travel and entertaining which puts added stress on weakened hearts.
"Overindulging in alcoholic beverages, rich food and foods high in salt increase blood pressure and water retention and can put a strain on the heart," says John Tan, MD, PhD, Cardiologist at Medical City Heart Hospital. "Eating right, limiting alcohol and selecting food choices with less sodium can help reduce risks."
For patients who have already had a heart attack, the heightened risk during the holidays is particularly dangerous. About one in five heart attack survivors age 45 and older will have another heart attack within five years.
Being with family during the holidays is a good time for patients to talk about their health history — not just heart attacks, but also high blood pressure and high cholesterol.
Preventing heart disease, and all cardiovascular diseases, means making smart choices now that will pay off the rest of your life. The American Heart Association has defined ideal cardiovascular health based on seven risk factors (Life's Simple 7) that people can improve through lifestyle changes: stop smoking, eat better, get active, lose weight, manage blood pressure, control cholesterol and reduce blood sugar.
Find small ways this holiday season to be healthy for good. For more information visit: heart.org/dallas.
About the American Heart Association
The American Heart Association is a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. We are dedicated to ensuring equitable health in all communities. Through collaboration with numerous organizations, and powered by millions of volunteers, we fund innovative research, advocate for the public's health and share lifesaving resources. The Dallas-based organization has been a leading source of health information for nearly a century. Connect with us on heart.org, Facebook, Twitter or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.
SOURCE American Heart Association