What is a heart attack?
It is a severe condition, also known as myocardial infarction caused by a problem with the flow of blood to the heart. The heart works a lot to help different cells take all nutrients and, of course, one of the main oxidizers - oxygen. To give all this stuff to the heart itself we have a large system of coronary arteries that envelops a muscular organ to contain its cells, always fresh and ready for work. Unfortunately, like all other arteries and veins, the coronary system is vulnerable, and different negative factors can change it, by starting a pathological process in heart vessels.
One of the most common reasons for these changes is the unbalanced lipid metabolism with a lot of cholesterol in the blood. This cholesterol finds damaged vessels and settles on the surface forming cholesterol plaques in arteries. This condition is scientifically named "Atherosclerosis" and it is one of the main problems that cause a heart attack. Vessels with cholesterol plaques have little place to form healthy blood flow, which causes a lot of problems, but not so critical, until the moment when plaques block all the flow, or rupture, form a clot and block flow.
What's next? The heart is still working hard, but a part of its muscles has no blood for work and suffers from ischemia, a condition caused by this lack of oxygen. Heart attack can be a reason for death because a damaged heart can not work normally, but also, if the patient wouldn't die from arrhythmia and dysfunction of heart work (cardiac arrest), ischemia will become necrosis, death of the cells that will cause a malfunction in the future, after treatment. Because of these risks, the faster you find that someone has heart failure, the more chances there are that he will survive and have higher life quality.
Common signs of a heart attack
There is a pack of specific signs that will help you to recognize a heart attack as early as possible and to help others or yourself. These symptoms include some sort of unpleasurable sensation in the chest, like pressure, tightness, and pain. All this sensation can spread to the arms, neck, jaw, or back. Another symptom that can be a marker of heart attack, in combination with the previously described sensation, or without it, is nausea, and abdominal pain. One can also have cold sweat and shortness of breath, tachycardia (resting heart rate over 100 beats per minute), different changes in blood pressure (it can go up or down).
Other symptoms, like fatigue or lightheadedness, also can help to find the nature of one's condition. You should remember that these signs are not universal. Not all symptoms can be present in one person, and conditions can be very different. Some people have mild pain, others may have more severe pain, and some can even have no symptoms. Unfortunately, if a heart attack is asymptomatic it is still dangerous for one’s heart. Because people can live like they always do with normal physical activity, it can cause damage to one’s heart.
How to treat a heart attack?
Two main stages of the treatment are primary aid, and secondary, or medical aid.
- The first one includes more simple methods, that don't need the patient to be right in the hospital but still help a patient in this severe condition. At this stage we can use oxygen, to make the rest of the blood flow more effective, to compensate for the problem that caused a heart attack. If you cannot give oxygen itself, you can open windows and let in as much fresh air as possible. Another option is drugs, such as aspirin, that will prevent thrombosis, nitroglycerin that will dilate vessels to compensate the flow block made by the cause of heart attack, and give patient morphine to prevent developing of shock caused by severe pain. The main part of this help is provided by paramedics, but fresh air and nitroglycerin can be guided by non-medical helpers, that find the patient, or by the patient himself, of course, after calling 911.
The second stage of help provided in the hospital includes very effective treatment techniques, like reperfusion therapy, which is, unfortunately, very time-demanding, because it has a short "window", so the faster you make it, the better result you will get. However, it's still one of the brilliant methods that helps prevent serious heart injuries and helps normal rehabilitation after a heart attack. As you can see, a heart attack is too risky.
It would be better to prevent this disease rather than treat it. But how?
Medication preventing cardiac diseases and particularly heart attack includes two tactics.
The first one can be named "modification of the lifestyle". It includes all changes from a healthy diet to sports, that the patient does by himself without drug support. For example, 75 - 150 minutes of aerobic exercise is recommended by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence as a way of decreasing the risk of myocardial infarction. A good way to help your body with the prevention of atherosclerosis and heart attack is to avoid smoking because it damages vessels and makes more "weak points" at the blood vessel wall. Nutrients are also a big support in the prophylactic of atherosclerosis and myocardial infarction.
Nowadays, scientists know that there is no need to eat only cholesterol-free products, but the diet must be healthy and full of vitamins. One of the best choices can be the Mediterranean diet in combination with control of body mass index. The factors that you can choose as indicators of risk may be blood pressure, body mass index, and waist circumference. If all these numbers are in the "healthy zone" you do well.
The other way to prevent a heart attack can be medication and supplements. One of the main medications is statins. Statins lower blood cholesterol very effectively and show a proven decrease in risks. Aspirin is not highly recommended as a part of prevention, especially in patients with a history of myocardial infarction. It is the result of bleeding risks, that some studies show as too high. However, some recommendations say that aspirin is good as part of preventing drug therapy.
Lifestyle changes, as you can see, are a big part of prophylactic
It helps after a heart attack, because not only prevents second myocardial infarction but also helps to stay strong and healthy which is not so easy after a heart attack. Not right after disease, because no physical exercises are allowed to prevent hard work of the heart muscles and damage from it, but after treatment lifestyle changes, such as easy but regular physical activity are very good to help after a heart attack. At the same time, dietary changes will start in the hospital, so the patient has more chances to change diet, by just stay in the same calorie portion.
What are the best supplements to prevent a cardiac attack or recover from it?
Some vitamins you can take from food, but not all. Moreover, making a rich in vitamins healthy diet with enough fish, fruits and vegetables can be very expensive, so supplements can be a good alternative. The key to their efficiency lays in the metabolic boost, that supplements give us, and changes in lipid metabolism. Supplements not only normalize cholesterol levels but also help us to be active, so we can do sports and take enough sunlight. The main supplements to prevent a heart attack are omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, especially E, A, C, D, and also micro elemental support, like calcium and sodium.
A heart attack is hard to treat but easy to prevent. That's why we can hear a lot of medical advice about sport, a healthy diet, and all this stuff. It is very hard to accept because everyday work needs a lot of mental force to eat healthily, do exercises, and avoid smoking and alcohol. However, a great "lifehack" is using supplements like omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin E, and, especially, multivitamin supplements such as Glutrasol-IE that include all ingredients to create added synergy effects. A combination of all factors is a great way to prevent disease and is recommended for everyone to avoid heart attack and all possible complications and have no negative side effects if used correctly.