Fast foods will first give you heart disease: Dr Dibya Ranjan Behera on World Heart Day

On the occasion of World Heart Day, Swasthya Sambad had an exclusive conversation with one of the most renowned Cardiologists in Bhubaneswar, Dr. Dibya Ranjan Behera, Consultant Cardiologist, AMRI Hospitals, Bhubaneswar. Excerpts of the interview:

What is the whole purpose behind the celebration of World Heart Day?

The primary purpose I would say is to reach the common man to aware and educate him about the importance or seriousness of anything related to the heart. Also about the fact that any accident related to heart is preventable. This for me is a very essential public awareness programme and the intention behind the annual celebration of World Heart Day.

Why is heart problem a general issue now? From Kids to old aged people, this is being detected across all age groups? What could be the reason?

Generally, the adults are seen with coronary artery disease. Here, there is a blockage in the coronary vein due to which the heart stops pumping. Basically, Coronary Artery Disease (CAD) is a condition that affects your coronary arteries, which supply blood to your heart. With CAD, plaque buildup narrows or blocks one or more of your coronary arteries. Chest discomfort (angina) is the most common symptom. CAD can lead to a heart attack or other complications like arrhythmia or heart failure.

On the other hand kids are mostly seen with congenital heart disease. It is a general term for a range of birth defects that affect the normal way the heart works. The term “congenital” means the condition is present from birth.

Another primary reason behind heart attack is diabetes. If you have diabetes, you’re twice as likely to have heart disease or a stroke as someone who doesn’t have diabetes—and at a younger age. The longer you have diabetes, the more likely you are to have heart disease.

What has been the impact of fast foods on heart?

Most clinicians recognise that junk food consumption is associated with premature heart disease. The general consensus is that this relationship can be explained by the saturated fats in these foods increasing obesity, diabetes and hyperlipidaemia risk and the high salt content raising blood pressure.

Hamburgers, fries, sugary sodas, and other less healthy foods may cause inflammation, a key player in the formation of artery-clogging plaque. Eating foods such as red meat and sugary treats may trigger inflammation, raising your risk of cardiovascular disease. So basically, as fast as it gets to get your food at fastfood, you first have the chances of getting a heart disease.

What is the best diet for a good and a healthy heart?

I don’t really impose any restriction as long as the oil and the ingredients are fresh and hygienic. Of course there need to be a controlled and balanced diet. All the white things are bad actually. Salt, sugar and even white rice should be ignored. Go for natural fruits, vegetables, seasonal fruits and veggies.

What is the impact of smoking and drinking on heart?

Alcohol and smoking will worsen the condition of heart failure, so it is essential that people with heart failure reduce their alcohol intake and quit smoking. Alcohol and smoking will worsen the condition of heart failure, so it is essential that people with heart failure reduce their alcohol intake and quit smoking. Smoking increases the formation of plaque in blood vessels. Coronary Heart Disease occurs when arteries that carry blood to the heart muscle are narrowed by plaque or blocked by clots. Chemicals in cigarette smoke cause the blood to thicken and form clots inside veins and arteries.

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