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7 Reasons Your Heart Attack Risk Is Highest in the Winter

November 08, 2017
A man shoveling snow   It’s bad enough that any physical activity leaves your heart pounding, but adding new tasks into the mix raises your risk even more. For example, you don’t need to worry about shoveling show during the summer, but the chore puts an extra strain on your body. Your heart is already working overtime to keep you toasty while you shovel, and the strain of lifting heavy snow makes it pump even harder, says William Frishman, MD, MACP, director of medicine at Westchester Medical Center and chairman of the medicine department at New York Medical College. Adding to the risk, it might be harder to recognize what’s happening. “They think their chest hurts because they’re shoveling—the muscle aches because they’re shoveling—and they keep going,” says Dr. Frishman. Keep your heart safe by paying a kid in your neighborhood to shovel your driveway. Kids’ hearts aren’t as susceptible to heart disease, so the extra work won’t put them at risk, says Dr. Frishman. If you do have to deal with your own shoveling, take breaks, especially if you experience, chest pain, shortness of breath, or sweating. 

NYMC Faculty: William H. Frishman, M.D., the Barbara and William Rosenthal Professor and Chairman of the Department of Medicine and professor of pharmacology
Source: The Reader's Digest