Popular stand-up comedian and actor Raju Srivastava, 58, on Wednesday morning suffered a heart attack while he was working out in a Delhi gym. His brother has confirmed the development to media. According to reports, the comedian of The Great Indian Laughter Challenge fame felt pain in his chest and passed out while he was exercising on a treadmill. He has been admitted to AIIMS hospital in Delhi and according to reports he has regained consciousness. Apart from popular comedy shows, he has been part of several Bollywood movies like Baazigar, Maine Pyaar Kiya and Bombay to Goa. (Also read: Singer KK dies of suspected heart attack; warning signs and symptoms of cardiac trouble)
Many famous celebs in the entertainment industry have suffered from sudden cardiac arrest in the recent past. While singer KK died of heart attack after his concert a few months back, TV heartthrob Sidharth Shukla suffered a massive cardiac arrest in September last year. Puneeth Rajkumar, Surekha Sikri, Raj Kaushal are some of the other popular personalities who passed away due to heart attack.
“In the recent past, we have heard of many of our young celebrities succumbing to sudden cardiac arrest. Another famous celebrity facing this problem was thankfully taken to the hospital in time. We must all remember that all of us who are adults and have risk factors for heart disease must address our risk factors for sudden cardiac arrest. All of us must take care of high blood pressure, diabetes, high blood cholesterol; one should not smoke or drink excessively and exercise regularly to avoid sudden cardiac arrest. Those who already have heart disease must visit their doctor and seek cardiologist’s advice to protect themselves,” says Dr Aparna Jaswal, Director, Cardiac Pacing and Electrophysiology, Fortis Escorts Heart Institute, Okhla, New Delhi.
Considering Srivastav was working out on a treadmill while he suffered a heart attack, we also asked a fitness expert if exercising too can increase one’s risk of heart trouble.
“Sudden heart attacks whilst exercising in middle age are quite common these days. When they affect a famous person, it makes news and there is disbelief with shock,” says Dr Kaushal Chhatrapati, Interventional Cardiologist, Wockhardt Hospital, Mumbai Central.
“As a Cardiologist I would recommend the following steps to avoid this; firstly, if you are unaccustomed to heavy exercising, don’t start with a strenuous exercise regimen. Go slow and start with walking briskly for 3-5 km a day in the beginning. Gradually build up your stamina. Secondly, don’t neglect your health checkup. I would advice all to “know their numbers”. This means knowing your BP, LDL Cholesterol, HbA1c value etc. Lastly, do not neglect any chest pain symptoms. Get an ECG and go to a nearest Tertiary care hospital to get an ECG and Cardiology consult. Early treatment saves lives. As far as heart is concerned: ‘Time is muscle’,” adds Dr Chahatrapati.
Fitness experts say one should not work non-stop or excessively as over-exercising has many negative effects for heart and muscles.
“Without taking a break, excessive high-intensity exercise raises the risk of heart disease and may potentially result in a heart attack or stroke,” says Rohit Shelatkar, a fitness and nutrition expert.
Shelatkar says while physical activity has many positive effects on your body, engaging in too much of it can lead to health problems like heart attacks or serious illnesses like muscle cramps and soreness.
“Overworking the body can result in more injuries, a decline in overall performance, and persistent fatigue. There is no denying the connection between good physical and mental health. However, an overstressed body can lead to disorientation, irritation, aggression, and mood swings,” he adds
The fitness expert says that moderation is the key and in order for the body to function well, a well-balanced diet, 30 to 40 minutes of exercise 4 to 5 days a week, and six to eight hours of sleep are essential.