Meditalk: Unexpected heart attack triggers (part 3)

Dr. Fritz Espedilla

(Foreword: This is the continuation of our response to Lira of LMPI regarding her query on unexpected heart attack triggers.)

DEAR Lira of LMPI,

Now, here are more lists of heart attack triggers that you least expect.

Being exposed to cold places

Cold is a shock to the system. If you are out there in the cold, this can cause your arteries to narrow which makes it harder for your blood to flow to your heart. Aside from that, your heart has to work real hard to keep yourself warm.

I remember a wife of a family friend who died when they went to Alaska for a vacation. His wife was hypertensive with some heart problems. They chose Alaska to get off from the heat of the Philippines. But, something went wrong. Whew! I am sure that is some kind of holiday that nobody wants to have. So, don’t you think it is much better live here in a tropical country even if we usually complain of the heat of the sun?

But, if you really enjoy the cold, you have to play it smart. Limit your time being exposed in the cold and be sure to keep moving when you are out there and avoid sitting at the sides to just feel the coolness of the place.

Dirty Air

I would like to share to you some facts. Don’t you know that heart attacks are more common in places where air pollution is high? This is because people who breathe dirty air regularly have more clogged arteries and heart diseases. Whoa! I could just imagine their traffic situation in Manila. We may have been complaining of the traffic situation here in Davao, but, what we are experiencing is nothing compared to the traffic in Manila. You could drift off to sleep there for 15 to 30 minutes only to wake up that your vehicle has not moved less than a kilometer. You’ll cringe at the idea that you had actually spent more on the road rather than on important things you should have been doing.

Moreover, being stuck in heavy traffic is dangerous because of car fumes coupled with your anger and frustration. Again, you have to take it easy, because even if you shout and let the whole world know that you are angry with the traffic situation, this will not ease the congestion.

Hmmm… as much as I wanted to talk more of the tips and tricks of the trade to help you in your fight against these unexpected heart triggers, but since we are losing space this time, let me then continue this in the next issue. Until then!

Dr. Fritz

(Dr. Fritz Legarde Espedilla is an aesthetic dermatologist and surgeon and a clinical sexologist. She is also trained in hypnotherapy and Medical Acupuncture. She has been in the broadcast media for more than a decade and has written a book based on her 15 year stint with her radio program, “Healthy is Sexy Secrets ni Dr. Fritz.” She is also a faculty in a College of Pharmacy. For your questions, you may send them to Dear Dr. Fritz, c/o SunStar-Davao Publishing Inc., Ebro-Pelayo Building, Jacinto St., Davao City, (former Department of Foreign Affairs office), across Ateneo de Davao University and beside Holy Child School of Davao, or you e-mail them to If you don’t wish your letter to be published, we regret that we cannot answer them. Thank you for your understanding.)