Bigg Boss 13 winner and TV star Sidharth Shukla, who was counted among the fittest actors of this generation, passed away from a sudden cardiac arrest today. His death has left the television and film industry, not to mention millions of his die-hard fans in shock. He was merely 40 years old and showed no signs of illness or slowing down.
In fact, his career was on a meteoric rise after his reality show win and his popular pairing with fellow Bigg Boss contestant Shehnaaz Gill. Sidharth featured in numerous soaps and reality shows, including Balika Vadhu and Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa. Sidharth isn’t the only one to die young from a heart attack of late. There has been a dramatic increase in young people having a sudden heart attack in recent times. Most of them are under 50 years old and reasonably fit, with no serious medical conditions.
Actor Amit Mistry – who was seen in shows like Tenali Rama and Bandish Bandits and films like Ek Chalis Ki Last Local – passed away at the young age of 47 in April this year, after suffering a major cardiac arrest. Amit was at his home in Andheri where he lived with his mother, when he breathed his last after his daily exercise. “He woke up, had his breakfast and even exercised before he suffered a cardiac arrest. He was absolutely fit and fine. Amit had no underlying medical condition,” the actor’s manager Maharshi Desai told PTI.
Another shocking death was that of Bollywood filmmaker and producer Raj Kaushal. He was only 49 years old when he died of a heart attack this June. Married to actress Mandira Bedi, Raj started his career as an actor. He later directed four films and worked as a producer for films like My Brother Nikhil and Pyaar Mein Kabhi Kabhi. His friend, music director Sulaiman Merchant told a leading daily, “Raj was feeling uneasy in the evening. Well, he took an antacid tablet. Raj told Mandira that he was getting a heart attack. Mandira acted swiftly and called Ashish Chaudhary, who rushed to their place. Mandira and Ashish put him in the car but he was losing consciousness. I think they drove off, taking him to the Lilavati Hospital (in Mumbai)… But in the next 5-10 minutes, they realised that he had no pulse. Before they reached the doctor, it was too late.”
The sudden demise of Sidharth Shukla signals a new epidemic, which is affecting young men in fairly good health. Still think you’re too young to have a heart condition?
Experts list the following risk factors for having a heart attack at a young age:
– Substance abuse or excessive alcohol use
– High blood pressure
– High cholesterol levels
– Lack of physical activity
– Poor diet
Primordial and primary prevention
Heart attacks can happen to anyone – but the risk is especially high when genetics come into play. Primordial and primary prevention is crucial for those with a family history of heart disease. Your hereditary risk of heart disease is defined by having a first-degree male relative (like your father, brother or son) under the age of 55 with heart attack or stroke history, or a first-degree female relative (like your mother, sister or daughter) under the age of 65 with heart attack or stroke history.
Guidelines recommend that people ages 20 to 39 without hereditary risk have their cardiovascular health assessed every four to six years. For those that have a genetic risk, it’s critical to be engaged in your health and speak with your doctor early.