10 Tips For A Healthier Holiday Heart

A woman touching a man's shoulder and smiling at a party

(BlackDoctor.org) — ‘Tis the season to be stressed, with Christmas and New Year’s just days away from each other, which can put a heavy burden on your heart.

“It is not uncommon to see heavier congestion in the hospital during the Christmas and New Year’s period of time. Some years that’s very true, but some years it’s quiet,” said cardiologist Keith Churchwell, M.D., associate director of the Vanderbilt Heart and Vascular Institute.

According to a University of California-San Diego study, a national database with detailed information on the 53 million deaths that occurred in the United States between 1973 and 2001 revealed that deaths from heart disease peak in December-January, with spikes on Christmas and New Year’s Day.

Churchwell said there are several possible reasons for the spike. One is that people who are having symptoms of heart trouble prior to the holiday season tend to delay going to the doctor.

“They do so because of obligations at home, not wanting to spoil holiday fun, not wanting to deal with the possibility of going to the hospital and being taken care of over the holiday period,” he said. “As a result, they are less likely to see their physicians over this period of time in order to get the acute care they may need.”