How much red wine is too much? Is your sex drive at an all time low? Medical experts address your deepest fears
1 – I’ve heard that men are prone to a sudden heart attack at an early age. What could be the cause and how can I avoid it?
ANS: The causes of heart attack at an early age are:
- Genetic Predisposition: The Indian race is more prone to an attack.
- Multiple risk factors like:
– Family tendency
– Diabetes Mellitus
– Screen for HT, DM, Lipids at an early age
– Regular exercise
– Eat more green vegetables and fruits
– Avoid fat and junk food.
2 – How frequently should I have a cardiac examination after 35 years of age?
ANS: After the age of 35, once in 3 years, and it’s best to have it done once a year after you touch 40.
3 – Can I engage in an active sex life after undergoing a Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting (CABG)?
ANS: You can resume an active sex life after 3 months of the CABG.
4 – Is it advisable to marry after a heart attack?
ANS: Yes, with early treatment.
5 – Does smoking really kill and how soon?
ANS: Smoking can cause early death due to:
– Heart disease
– Lung disease
– Various cancers
– Strokes — CVA
One cigarette a day reduces life by about 11 minutes and accelerates the chances of a heart attack, particularly between the ages of 30-40.
6 – Sitting on my workstation has given me a chronic back ache. How do I tackle it?
ANS: This is called RSI (Repetitive Strain Injury). To avoid it, correct your posture and use a proper chair with your knee/hip bent at a 90 degree angle. Alternately, use a foot rest to achieve proper height or use a chair with an armrest. Your laptop screen must be at the same level as your eyes. Sit with your back straight.
7 – My dad is bald and I fear I may be soon heading in that direction. What are my options?
ANS: If your dad had become bald prematurely, then there are higher chances of you following suit, as you can’t change your genes. Consume a proteinrich diet and take care of your hair. Baldness can be treated with medication and surgical procedures.
8 – I believe red wine is good for the heart. Is that true? How many pegs of whiskey or cans of beer can one safely consume in a day?
ANS: Red wine is good for the heart as it reduces cholesterol. Only two pegs of whiskey or one can of beer are advisable (only if you must) in a party atmosphere.
9 – If I’m having trouble performing in bed, should I worry about becoming impotent?
ANS: Yes, you should worry about becoming impotent as there are systemic causes like diabetes, hypertension, hormonal disturbances and certain drugs that can cause impotency.
10 – If a condom breaks during sex, do I need to get myself checked for sexually transmitted diseases?
ANS: If involved in a high risk sexual behaviour with an unknown person, get yourself tested.
11 – Is diabetes genetic? Can wrong food/lifestyle also cause the disease?
ANS: Improper food habits (aerated beverages, fast food etc) along with an irregular lifestyle, lack of exercise and sedentary habits often lead to Type 2 Diabetes in genetically predisposed persons.
12 – Can lifting heavy weights cause hernia or impotency?
ANS: Not if it’s done properly. Otherwise, the improper use of weights often leads to strains, fractures, tendonitis and other sorts of dislocation.
13 – How do I know I am depressed enough to resort to medication or seek help?
ANS: When a person feels a lingering sadness, a loss of interest in life, along with a lack of sleep, appetite and work impairment for more than two weeks, the patient is likely to be depressed and in need of help. If his condition advances with an addition of suicidal tendencies, inertia towards professional life and weeping without reason, he may need medication.
14 – What problems does stress create? How can I avoid getting stressed out?
ANS: Stress precipitates body aches, hyper tension, diabetes mellitus, easy fatigue, high blood pressure and coronary artery disease (heart disease). The impact of stress can be buffered by maintaining a regular routine, doing exercise, yoga or meditation. Simple deep breathing techniques help.
15 – How much exercise must I indulge in to ensure I stay healthy?
ANS: 30-40 minutes walking 5 days a week or 30 minutes aerobics/strengthening 3 days a week is a basic must.
Medical Experts: Dr Jagdish Prasad, Medical Superintendent, Safdarjung Hospital, New Delhi and Dr OP Sharma, Consultant Cardiac Surgeon, Manipal Hospital, Bengaluru.