Santa is truly a medical marvel, according to urologist Peter Lund, MD, president of the Pennsylvania Medical Society. 

“It’s astounding, really,” he says. “Year after year, Santa’s lifestyle creates physical and mental stress—and yet there he is, jolly as ever.” 

“Santa’s job can be strenuous, carrying heavy sacks of toys,” adds Daniel Glunk, MD, an internist from Williamsport, PA, and the society’s president-elect. “Often, doctors recommend a physical exam before a person starts such activities. It’s best to know if the person would be able to handle the activity without risk to their health. 

“I believe that Santa does have an annual checkup, where he and his doctors work together to minimize a variety of risk factors,” Dr. Glunk adds. “Likely during the physical exam, Santa and his doctors discuss his lifestyle choices and, if needed, would work with him to develop a plan to manage any problems. That could be one of the secrets to Santa’s many years of duty to children all over the world.” 

Santa also isn’t sedentary, the experts note. He strolls through his workshop, trains his reindeer, and stays mentally alert by making lists of good boys and girls. 

The moral of the story? Have a regularly scheduled physical exam, and stay active, both physically and mentally. 

Tune in tomorrow for Part 2 of this story.    

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