Heart attacks in men coincide with scooping deep snow

Heart attacks in men coincide with scooping deep snow. (NTV News)

If you don't have a snow blower, your back gets a workout in Central Nebraska each time the snow falls.

The heart gets a workout, too. Experts say the deeper the snow, the more men die of heart attacks.

In one study, a 34 percent increase was observed the day after an eight-inch snowfall. Higher rates were noted when even more snow fell.

Into their fourth snow removal of the day, Brian and Brandon keep scooping - they work for a property company and it's a tough job.

"It takes it out of you after a while and then you start sweating with all your layers on," said Brandon Meseure.

The men have scooped a few walks, but for many men, scooping snow can put the heart at risk.

"Activity itself is like a stress test," said Anirban Ghosh of the Platte Valley Medical Group. "Then the cold weather by itself can cause breathing problems on top of it which can just aggravate the situation."

The combination of several inches of snow and blood vessels constricting - cold weather causes real concern. The other issue, many snow scoopers are usually sedentary every other day of the year.

"Just like you should not go out and start running miles after miles without actual proper conditioning, the same thing happens when you're trying to scoop snow, because it's a lot of hard work," Ghosh said. "It involves a lot of physical activity."

Experts say if you're not used to exercise, pace yourself. Maybe stretch beforehand, and if you have heart issues, hire it done.

"Earlier on in the season we had nine ... that took all day," Meseure said.

Another piece of advice from doctors is if you have any concerns about your heart, consult your physician before scooping the snow.

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