Cardiac Diseases and Lifestyle Choices

Lately, to keep my skills as an exercise physiologist, sharp*, I've been reading up about some of the more common cardiac diseases tied to obesity including information on Drug/surgical/Exercise interventions.Outside of aging,genetic anormalies, environmental pollution, trauma, consequences of being sick and never fails to amaze me just how bad our lifestyle choices affect our body. And how much, our heart, this WONDERFUL machine, tries to juggle things around, accommodate the changes and  fight to keep us alive despite our reckless sans-laisse attitude towards it

The more I read about the heart and the amount of external + internal "pressure" it endures in other to keep the body functioning, the more am beginning to consider becoming a cardiologist instead of a Physiatrist

Now let's talk about the medications.

Most obesity related heart disease patients are usually battling another disease which may either be the cause of their heart problems or an after math condition of their heart disease. Some of the common diseases include, hypertension, Type 2 diabetes and  pulmonary disorders (attn smokers). So as you can imagine, these patients are on several medication, each serving a different purpose.

Medications and the cost of health care is not cheap. Even with Insurance coverage You still have to co-pay. To think that for the most part, we can change the course of our health as we age through our lifestyle choices is very important. Educating the public on the importance of good nutrition and exercise doesn't just save the individual money but also lessens the burden on the government. Resources can be used to target other national problems that ARE NOT man made. I'm not sure how much money our government is currently investing on health care education and preventable medicine  but we need to do more.

According to Harboring Hearts, a heart surgical procedure or treatment in the US can cost between 
$30, 00 - 450,000. 

Obviously there are determinant factors such as the type of surgery, facility (public vs private),  and the severity of the patient's condition. The website does not break down the cost . It does not mention if components like cardiac rehabilitation post an event or surgery, lifetime medications and the cost of hiring a healthcare aid to assist with activities of daily living and many others, were factored into this amount. Perhaps, its only the " in patient-medical" cost.

How can these numbers not inspire people to live healthier?
How can you see a 300lb individual, walking down the street, perhaps juggling an oxygen tank, struggling to go about their business because of their weight...and not learn something from it. And not tell yourself...I must never let myself "go".I must make an effort to take better care of myself so I do not end up in a similar situation. How can you not?

I am not a petite or skinny size 5....not that its any indication of an individual's health status...but the point is...i struggle daily to make the right healthy decisions. I understand the temptations. I understand the cravings and i do not believe in "restricting" oneself. But I do believe in "proportions". Too much of anything is bad for you and it goes the same for food and even for exercising. Too much exercise with no adequate rest for the muscles to heal and rejuvenate will leave the athlete susceptible to injury. But there are also things that are just plain BAD for you such as cigarettes. There's nothing good about it.

My motto is, if am going to buy ice cream, am gonna walk the 45 minutes it takes to get to the grocery store or ice cream stand near my home and walk back!
And also, I think about my future, my unborn kids, my un-developed family. Do i want to make choices today that will leave me sick and unable to fully enjoy my family in the future? Choices that will leave me with nothing but medical bills as high as a mountain? Choices that over time will restrict my ability to travel leisurely and enjoy certain activities because of my condition*?
When I think about all of that, I don't eat the ice cream. But if am in a "devil may care" mood and do eat it , i try to make sure i schedule a workout session in the near future to balance the scale

I understand special circumstances like, metabolic disorders, depression and other psychological events having a strong influence on some people, forcing them to turn to food, smoking, drugs and etc.

HOWEVER, when do we stop making excuses for the average regular person who is JUST PLAIN LAZY.
It seems there's a medical condition for every "bad" behavior and people are exploiting them to justify their actions.A kid acting plain stubborn has ADD. Now everyone and their mother has thyroid disease, so they stop trying to exercise to loose the weight or eat healthy. Blame it on the thyroids. Whereas according to a research study i read, the number of people who struggle with weight loss due to a under active thyroid is small.Obesity is sweeping across america like the plagues that swept across Egypt during the days of the prophet Moses.

Perhaps, its time the FDA and US Department of Health and Human Services flip the script. Let's put a high tax on fatty food. Make is a luxury to buy. Let's see how many people can afford to be obese. If tax payers contribute to the government programs to make healthcare affordable for everyone, then there has to be a way to regulate and hold people accountable for their action.

Only in America, despite our health crisis, is there a legal restaurant called THE HEART ATTACK GRILL that serves extremely horrible unhealthy but tasty i presume food. And to rub it in, the servers wear nurse outfits and any patron who is over 350lbs can eat for free.Their tag line? "Taste worth dying for".....which is fine and dandy but not on my tax payers $$$....I don't care much for their argument that the patron's choose to buy the product. They are exploiting their weakness/addiction as a drug dealer would a crack addict. A weakness that is killing thousands of people across the country. I do understand that patrons are required to sign a waiver before eating?(i think i read that somewhere) but can we also ask them to pass a psych evaluation first?

If you do not care about your body do not oblige other (tax payers) to care about it


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