Why severe heart attacks occur most often on Mondays

Is there anyone who really likes Mondays?

Maybe some of us think of them as a fresh start to a new week.

But when that alarm goes off early Monday morning, it signals the end of a care-free attitude and hello to whatever business is at hand — whether that’s at the office or at home.

Part and parcel to that is a higher level of stress. And that may be just one of the reasons why researchers believe Mondays are the most dangerous day of the week for your heart.

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Monday is the most common day for STEMI

Past studies have shown that Monday is the day people are most likely to suffer from stroke and heart attack. Now, new research confirms this link in the deadliest type of heart attack.

Investigators analyzed 10,528 patients in Ireland and Northern Ireland who were admitted to a hospital between 2013 and 2018 with an ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI). This type of severe heart attack occurs when one of the major coronary arteries is fully blocked.

With STEMI, an emergency procedure is usually required to reopen the blocked artery. Quick treatment is a must to increase survival odds.

Here’s what the study data showed:

  • There was a 13 percent greater risk of a STEMI-type heart attack on a Monday compared with the average of the other days.
  • Sunday admissions were also above average, while Thursday had the lowest admissions — though the differences in both these cases were too small to be statistically significant.

“We’ve found a strong statistical correlation between the start of the working week and the incidence of STEMI,” says cardiologist Jack Laffan from the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust. “This has been described before but remains a curiosity.”

Your body’s clock may play a role

The study didn’t look into what might be causing this Monday STEMI spike, but there are a few theories.

One is that the added stress of going back to work after the weekend may be a trigger. This theory was floated in a 2017 study showing a greater incidence of heart attacks on Mondays.

However, Laffan says the cause is likely a combination of a few factors, with one being circadian in nature. For example, blood pressure — a crucial factor in heart attack risk — follows a circadian rhythm. And disruptions to the sleep-wake circadian cycle can affect cardiovascular function.

Given that we may not follow the same sleep schedule on weekends as we do during the week, we’re more likely to short ourselves on sleep from Sunday night into Monday, thus disrupting our circadian rhythm.

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Relieving Monday’s pressures

While it’s important to take care of our heart health every day, the researchers say it’s worth remembering the extra pressures Mondays may put on your body.

The first thing we can do is keep to our regular sleep schedule on the weekends. It might feel good to sleep in on Saturday and Sunday, but the disruption it can cause to our sleep-wake cycle and our heart health isn’t worth it in the long run.

As for alleviating “Monday stress,” there are a few practices and supplements you can try:

  • Journaling: Spend a few minutes writing out your anxieties about the week ahead, then come up with some actions you can take during the week to address them. Doing this will help put your fears in perspective.
  • Meditation: Even a quick 5-minute meditation break is a great way to give yourself a mental break from your worried thoughts. Regular meditation has a host of health benefits — it can even support your cardiovascular health!
  • Exercise: Getting some exercise first thing Monday morning can help clear your mind and elevate your mood. Studies show exercise reduces symptoms of anxiety and depression. And of course, it’s great for your heart.
  • Do something fun: Even scheduling something as simple as a quick walk or a coffee break with a friend can help give you a reason to look forward to Monday instead of dreading it.

Following a good diet is especially important for a healthy heart and mind. If your’s isn’t optimal, follow my colleague Virginia Tims-Lawson’s advice and try adding these supplements to your daily routine:

  • The B vitamins, especially B6, B12, and folate have appeared in studies to be protective against heart failure, heart disease, and stroke. Plus, B12 gives some protection against stress.
  • Vitamin K2, grape seed extract, and pterostilbene are all nutrients that promote healthy, pliable arteries.
  • Calcium Disodium EDTA is a chelating agent, meaning it helps remove substances. Research has also shown that chelation therapy can help remove the kind of rogue calcium that makes its way to your arteries where it sticks to form plaque.

Editor’s note: Have you heard of EDTA chelation therapy? It was developed originally to remove lead and other contaminants, including heavy metals, from the body. Its uses now run the gamut from varicose veins to circulation. Click here to discover Chelation: Natural Miracle for Protecting Your Heart and Enhancing Your Health!


Scientists Confirm The Worst Day of The Week For Severe Heart Attacks — ScienceAlert

68 Blue monday – association between incidence of STEMI and day of the week — Heart

If You’re Going To Have A Stroke Or STEMI, Here’s When It Might Happen! — Pulsara

Monday Blues: Is It a Real Thing? — PsychCentral

Carolyn Gretton

By Carolyn Gretton

Carolyn Gretton is a freelance writer based in New Haven, CT who specializes in all aspects of health and wellness and is passionate about discovering the latest health breakthroughs and sharing them with others. She has worked with a wide range of companies in the alternative health space and has written for online and print publications like Dow Jones Newswires and the Philadelphia Inquirer.