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Thread: Thanksgiving Dinner Can Cause A Heart Attack

  1. #1
    Elite Member NVash's Avatar
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    Oct 2009

    Default Thanksgiving Dinner Can Cause A Heart Attack

    Consumer Reports Insights

    Consumer Reports: Thanksgiving dinner can be deadly if you overdo it

    Don't overdo it on pecan pie. (Allison Dinner - Heather Kennedy )

    A Thanksgiving feast can easily exceed 4,000 calories. (Stock - Stock)

    Monday, November 22, 2010; 3:59 PM

    A few years ago on Thanksgiving day, Marvin M. Lipman, Consumers Union's chief medical adviser, was called to the emergency room to see a 52-year-old high school football coach in the throes of a heart attack. In the whirlwind of activity to stabilize him before a transfer to a nearby medical center for angioplasty and stenting, Lipman didn't have time to sit down with his wife to take a decent history until later that evening.
    This Story

    "You couldn't possibly believe what he ate today," she said, and then went on to describe a meal that could have fed his entire offensive backfield. He also had a high blood cholesterol level and a family history of early coronary disease.
    In years gone by, skeptics wondered whether a single meal could trigger a heart attack. But in the past decade or two, researchers have learned a lot more about the physiological events that take place after eating a meal packed with carbohydrates, fat and salt. Some research has found that it can set the stage for a heart attack. For example, a study of 1,986 heart attack patients presented at a meeting of the American Heart Association in 2000 suggested that an unusually large meal quadrupled the chance of having a heart attack within the next two hours.
    The price of a pigout

    After a large meal (a Thanksgiving feast can easily exceed 4,000 calories), cardiac output of blood is increased and diverted to the intestinal circulation to aid digestion, which can take as long as six hours, leaving other organs, including the heart and brain, relatively deprived. The work involved in all this shunting around of blood might be the equivalent of vigorous sex or moderate exercise.
    But that's not all. An increase in insulin, triggered by the carbohydrate content of the meal, can compound the situation by preventing normal relaxation of the coronary arteries. Triglyceride elevation, from the fats and carbs, can impair the function of the inner lining of the coronary arteries and cause those vessels to become less elastic and acutely inflamed. Increases in inflammatory markers such as C-reactive protein have been noted following a large, high-fat meal. And the rise in blood pressure that usually occurs after eating such a meal can cause those inflamed patches to rupture, which in turn can lead to blockages and heart attacks.

    Gobbling down a huge dinner can have other health consequences, too. The prodigious amounts of gastric acid produced during the body's effort to digest the food can cause acid reflux that often goes on for many hours. The high fat content of a typical holiday feast can precipitate a gallbladder attack in people with gallstones. The high salt content might trigger acute heart failure in someone with a history of that condition.
    Add to those possibilities the sleepiness generated not only by the meal but also by the wine one might imbibe (making the drive home an accident waiting to happen), plus the embarrassing flatulence and waking up the next morning with acute gout, and you have many good reasons to revamp your eating habits at Aunt Fannie's fabulous feast this year.
    The only thing you probably don't have to worry about is rupturing your stomach. That rarely happens, because the stomach can expand to accommodate nearly four times the normal volume of food.
    Be a gourmand, not a glutton

    So what's a formerly fearless foodie to do on a holiday that features a dinner table groaning with potentially deadly goodies?
    l Don't arrive famished. Have a snack an hour or two before.
    l Stay away from the finger food at the hors d'oeuvres table.
    l Eat the salad first.
    l Use a salad plate instead of a dinner plate.
    l Taste everything to your liking, but take small portions and resist seconds.
    l Eat slowly, and participate in conversation.
    l Skip the dessert, or at least go easy on it. Fruit is preferable.
    l Limit alcohol intake to one glass of wine, and drink at least one full glass of water.
    (c) Copyright 2010. Consumers Union of United States Inc.

    Source: Consumer Reports: Thanksgiving dinner can be deadly if you overdo it
    Who knew? It saddens me that there are no comments on this article, Id love to see what everyone has to say about this.

  2. #2
    Gold Member eboni's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009


    I want to know exactly what he ate if it was enough to feed his entire offensive backfield.

    Personally, we have plenty of veggies like asparagus, collard greens with okra and cabbage; I never serve mashed potatoes and gravy with a holiday dinner- that's just too much starch with the dressing, gravy and potato pie or cake; hate salt so my problem is usually under-seasoning; however, it's the butter for me- I make homemade yeast rolls and always bake desserts from scratch. I do have one lovely carrot cake recipe that is from scratch and uses canned carrots and oil- can't even tell the difference except in the shortened amount of time it takes to make compared with the other version.
    ...Stopped smoking on March 8, 2011. Was trying to put a fancy ticker in my signature but it didn't work...

  3. #3
    Elite Member KrisNine's Avatar
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    Jul 2006
    Sleepy night night land


    Bring it on...I only eat like this once a year. Honestly, I'm pretty full after a few bites of everything.

  4. #4
    Elite Member cupcake's Avatar
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    Jun 2007
    Tampa Bay florida


    We keep it pretty healthy too. I'm not a fan of dressing, mashed pot etc.
    My grace is sufficient for you, for my my strength is made perfect in weakness...I love you dad!
    Rip Mom

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