Recent research makes the case for being extra careful before you pick up that shovel: Seven percent of the 500 heart attack patients who participated in the study had experienced heart attacks while shoveling snow.
Here's how to stay safe when the snow flies:
- Avoid eating a large meal before you begin, as digesting too much food puts strain on the heart. Instead, have a healthy snack.
- Use a small shovel. Lifting heavy loads of snow can cause sudden spikes in blood pressure. When possible, push, rather than lift, the snow.
- Watch what you drink. Alcohol can dull the body's senses, causing you to underestimate physical stress.
From our sister publication Diabetes Focus Winter 2013