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Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Says Don't Let Snow Be a Pain: Ease into Clearing Sidewalks, Drives
Date:12/17/2007

Michigan Blues recommend people pace themselves when shoveling

DETROIT, Dec. 17 /PRNewswire/ -- With much of the state experiencing one of the snowiest Decembers in several seasons and prospects for more on the horizon, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network recommend that Michigan residents keep heart health in mind and go slow when clearing snow from driveways and sidewalks throughout the winter. Here are some facts about shoveling:
* Shoveling snow can be hard work. Clearing snow for 15 minutes

qualifies as a moderate physical daily activity recommended by the

U.S. Surgeon General. However, for many sedentary, out-of-shape

Americans, shoveling heavy, wet snow for 10 minutes is equivalent

to running on a treadmill to exhaustion. Studies show that major

snow storms are often associated with increased emergency room

visits for everything from muscle aches to heart attacks, and the

common denominator is snow shoveling.

* The cold temperatures don't help. Cold air raises blood pressure in

people who don't normally have a blood pressure problem and poses

an even greater risk to people with high blood pressure, according

to University of Florida researchers.

Heeding several tips offered by the Michigan Blues can keep shoveling show from being a pain in the neck, or worse, this winter. First, if you have any of the following conditions, talk to your physician before shoveling snow.
The list includes:

* A personal or family history of heart disease or asthma

* Already sustained a heart attack

* A history of back problems

* High blood pressure

* High cholesterol level

* A history of smoking

* A history of inactivity

For healthy, active individuals, the Michigan Blues suggest th
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SOURCE Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan
Copyright©2007 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

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