01 Oct How Does Heart Health Factor into COVID-19?
You’ve likely seen in the news that the healthier a person is, the better their likelihood of overcoming COVID-19 complications and long-haul COVID symptoms. This seems anecdotal, but research shows that health does factor into COVID-19 survival, particularly your heart health.
In this brief article, the best interventional cardiologist in Tampa, Jesal V. Popat, M.D., FACC, will explain how your heart health factors into COVID-19 survival and symptoms.
Does Heart Health Have a Role in COVID-19 Symptoms?
COVID-19 can cause heart issues that may have lasting impacts. In fact, some COVID-19 patients who appear to be having a heart attack are actually suffering from marked inflammation of the heart muscle, called myocarditis. But what are your chances of survival if you had heart problems before contracting COVID?
According to a recent study published by Harvard Health, “About 10% of patients with pre-existing cardiovascular disease (CVD) who contract COVID-19 will die, compared with only 1% of patients who are otherwise healthy. Increased risk has also been seen in people with high blood pressure (hypertension) and coronary artery disease (CAD), though it is not clear why. Some experts have suggested that the missing link may be the use of certain blood pressure medications called angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs).”
What does this mean in layman’s terms? It means that taking care of your heart health is not only crucial in living a long and healthy life, but is also crucial in overcoming COVID-19.
Tips to Improve Your Heart Health
If you’re concerned about your heart health, especially in light of the ongoing pandemic, there are a few simple steps you can take to improve your heart health:
- Eat a plant-based diet and limit your intake of processed foods. This can help decrease inflammation and improve your overall blood pressure.
- Exercise at least a few times a week. We often attribute heart health to diet alone, but like any other muscle the heart needs to exercise to stay in top shape. You don’t need to powerlift or run marathons to benefit, however. All it takes is a daily walk for 20-30 minutes to see major improvements in both your cardiovascular, mental, and emotional well being.
- Do not ignore heart symptoms. If you are feeling pressure in your chest, heart pain, shortness of breath, or elevated blood pressure, seek help from a medical professional as soon as you can. Prevention is key when it comes to heart health and early treatment is your best bet to stay safe.
Interventional Cardiology in Tampa Can Help
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