Daylight saving time may increase the risk of heart attacks
This is the weekend we spring forward to daylight saving time. Some studies show people have a greater risk of having a heart attack the first Monday "after" the switch
Research released three years ago found the risk rises by 25-percent compared to other Mondays of the year.
"I never heard of such a thing," said Kelly Young.
It may sound a bit bizarre at first, but it's a topic that has been around for decades.
"Before I became a physician, there was talk of circadian variations in various body physiologies and during my entire career I've heard about heart attacks associated with daylight saving," said Dr. Brad Cavender with Cardiovascular Associates.
Dr. Cavender said it is impossible for one physician to know the number of heart attacks associated with daylight saving time.
However, "Data in the past showed even perhaps a 30 percent uptake in the incidents of heart attacks associated with particularly the spring time change," said Dr. Cavender.
“I think that's mental more than anything. We lose hours of sleep regularly and that's self-imposed," said Young.
Dr. Cavender said there are greater risks associated with the possibility of a heart attack. The time switch should be the least of your worries.
"Untreated diabetes, untreated lipid abnormalities, untreated hypertension, smoking and other forms of tobacco substance abuses and people that are not being properly treated for these risk factors," said Dr. Cavender.
Dr. Cavender confirms it is harder to adjust to springing forward rather than falling back.
For folks like Young, the health aspect of daylight saving time isn't important. She looks forward to the results.
“The days are longer. It's light until closer to seven. that's when my kids come home and we get to have a little more time outside," said Young.
Bottom line, there's a lot of risk factors that can play a role in bringing on a heart attack. Dr. Cavender highly recommends people see their healthcare provider regularly, get more sleep and stress less.
Study shows that women are at a higher risk, than men. There are a number of reasons. According to the American Heart Association, women often suffer more with diabetes, obesity and depression. All of which can contribute to a heart attack.