Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala): Residents of Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, put on their running shoes early on Saturday morning to take part in a marathon to raise awareness about the importance of creating a healthy environment.
The marathon was organised by a private hospital in the city in the run up to the World Heart Day.
The marathon sought to draw people’s attention to the importance of exercising in order to keep their heart active and healthy.
Participants dressed in bright yellow T-shirts and caps ran enthusiastically from Kanakakkunnu Palace to the Napier Museum in the city.
Runners also carried banners and placards urging others to inculcate exercise into their daily lives.
The chairman and head of the Cardio Vascular Centre of Ananthapuri Hospital, Dr. C. G. Bahuleyan said the main idea behind organising the marathon was to inspire people to lead a healthy lifestyle amid spiralling cases of heart diseases in Kerala.
“Heart disease is the commonest killer of mankind and it is on a very high rate in Kerala. Compared to other states in India and elsewhere in developed countries the incidents and prevalence of coronary artery disease, which leads to heart attack, is very high in Kerala,” said Dr. Bahuleyan.
Quoting a report by Kerala chapter of Cardio Society of India, Dr. Bahuleyan said there has been an increase of 12 percent in heart diseases among Kerala residents since 2010.
World Heart Day is celebrated every year on September 29. Each year a fresh theme is chosen to bring key issues and topics related to heart health to the front.
This year the theme is to create heart-healthy environment. The places in which people live, work and play should not add to the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD).
Heart disease is the number one killer of people in India. Some of the main causes of heart failure in India include coronary heart disease, hypertension, obesity, diabetes et al.
Reportedly, on an average 2.4 million Indians die of heart diseases every year and adding to the numbers are factors like stress, unhealthy eating habits, lack of sleep and dependence on alcohol and cigarettes.