During the winter months, we are more likely to catch viruses like colds and the flu. Research has also shown that the rate of heart attacks increases during winter as well. Here are a few reasons as to why people are more likely to have a heart attack when it’s colder outside.
Cold temperatures can cause physiological changes that make a heart attack more likely. This is because the body is working harder to stay warm. To do so the blood vessels narrow, and blood is pumped harder through them, raising your blood pressure.
The body also goes through hormonal changes when it is colder, such as having higher cholesterol levels and increased risk for blood clots. High cholesterol and blood clots can cause heart attacks.
Vitamin D Deficiency
When the days are shorter and colder, we don’t go outside as often. Our bodies require some sun exposure because of the vitamin D it provides. Studies have shown that vitamin D deficiencies may be linked to heart attack and heart disease.
For many, winter means warm blankets, hot drinks, and curling up by a blazing fire. We tend to be less physically active in the winter which can lead to weight gain. Add in holiday feasts and our waistlines continue to expand. Being overweight and sedentary can make someone more susceptible to cardiac issues.
HPV and Heart Disease
More severe strains of HPV can not only cause cervical cancer, but recent studies have shown that they also may make stroke and heart attack more likely in women. The only way to prevent HPV is through the extremely effective vaccine.
Am I at Risk?
None of the factors above guarantee that you will have a heart attack. Every person is different so if you have any concerns you should speak to your GP. You can also get peace of mind by undergoing blood tests and screening.
At Touchwood Pharmacy’s health clinics, you can obtain a wide range of blood tests to check your hormone levels, vitamin D levels, thyroid, cholesterol, and much more. You can even get general wellwoman/man tests and vaccinations like the HPV vaccine. Book your appointment online today.