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4 Things To Avoid If You Have Atrial Fibrillation

4 Things To Avoid If You Have Atrial Fibrillation
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things to avoid with afib


Atrial fibrillation – more commonly known as “afib” – is an abnormal heart rhythm that affects millions of people around the world. It is a result of abnormal electrical activity in the heart’s upper two chambers. During an episode of atrial fibrillation, it typically feels like the heart is fluttering or beating more rapidly. It can be frightening at first, but many afib patients get accustomed to the feeling.

While it may seem like a minor discomfort when it’s happening, these patients need to be aware of the long-term dangers of atrial fibrillation. If the condition persists or becomes worse, it can lead to heart failure or stroke. This is why it is important to manage the condition by taking medications and avoiding certain lifestyle factors that can lead to afib episodes. Find out four things to avoid if you have atrial fibrillation:

1. Alcohol

If you suffer from afib, you may want to reconsider that drink after dinner. Alcohol is one of the biggest triggers of atrial fibrillation episodes, which is why cardiologists recommend afib patients avoid it altogether. While some studies have shown that wine can actually be beneficial for heart health, it has not been shown to improve atrial fibrillation at all.

afib and wine

2. Caffeine

Atrial fibrillation usually manifests as a rapid heartbeat. What else can lead to rapid heartbeat? Caffeine. While many patients with afib have a small amount of caffeine, such as the content in a cup of tea, others steer clear of it completely. The tachycardia effect of caffeine combined with the heart-racing flutter of atrial fibrillation only exacerbates an already serious problem.

coffee and atrial fibrillation

3. Drugs

If you want to take a dire medical issue and turn it into a definite death sentence, you’d engage in illicit drug use as an afib patient. Illegal drugs like cocaine and methamphetamine can take the irregular heart rhythm of atrial fibrillation and make it fatal by drastically increasing the heart rate to dangerous levels.

drugs and afib

4. Excessive Sugar

Much like caffeine, excessive sugar increases your heart rate. When you have atrial fibrillation, you want to avoid anything that results in an extreme increase of your heart rate, as this can become dangerous and lead to cardiac arrest. Even if your afib episodes do not reach dangerously high levels, just having an afib episode alone is doing damage to your heart. The more of these episodes you have, the more likely you are to suffer from heart failure or stroke.

afib and sugar

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