Your sitting with your family at a holiday meal - be it Thanksgiving, Christmas or Hanuka.. It's been a stressful day, being with family and loved ones because of all the bickering, constant demands and stress of getting the meal completely cooked and ready to serve while juggling a million other details. You've been noshing all day and now you sit down in quite an emotional state, hoping everyone will love the food and enjoy the experience. You begin to shovel down the highly caloric, rich, salted foods - true delicacies. You eat pretty fast, since you are still being asked to be the hostess with the mostest. You continue to anxiously attend to all the details - and eat -grabbed moments as permitted. And you start to feel what you think is a bad case of heartburn....or is it something more serious??
Women are at risk for heart attacks during the holiday season due to stress and anxiety levels coupled with heavy calorie/fat laden meals and particularly older women with decreasing levels of estrogen can succumb to a heart event. Know the difference between heartburn and a heart attack:
-Chest pain or pressure
-Increasing pain when you exeet yourself
-Shortness of breath
-No response to antacids
-Nausea and possible vomiting
Women need to realize that their symptoms can be more subtle. Women need to try to reduce the stress and anxiety that typically develops as they entertain through the very extended holiday season. Take time out to exercise - ask for help and delegate - abandon the notion of perfection (there is none) - lower expectations and accept your family and friends for their joys and their flaws. Make the holiday season manageable so it doesn't undo you!!