It is never too late to adopt a healthy diet to reduce heart attack risk

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2012-12-05 16:33

This time of year many of us blow our diet at a festive holiday meal. In addition, many Americans eat unhealthily much of the time. The result might be a heart attack, particularly among older individuals at high risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) who are receiving effective drugs for secondary prevention. The CVD risk of an unhealthy diet was reported in a new study by an international team of researchers. Their findings were presented in the December 4 edition of the journal Circulation.

According to the American Heart Association, CVD is the number one cause of death in the United States. The researchers noted that diet quality is strongly related to CVD incidence; however, little is known about its impact on cardiovascular disease events in older people at high risk of CVD and receiving effective drugs for secondary prevention.

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Therefore, they designed a study to assess the association between diet quality and CVD events in a large population of subjects from 40 nations with CVD or diabetes mellitus with end-organ damage (i.e., a previous heart attack or health issues associated with atherosclerosis) who were receiving medications that had proven benefit.

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Most scientific agencies are in agreement: Saturated animal fat and cholesterol do not do the heart any good. According to USDA figures, each day, the average American eats just 5 ounces of meat and chicken containing saturated fat and cholesterol, and 29.2 ounces of milk and dairy products (666 pounds per American) containing the same dangerous factors. A Survey of Mortality Rates and Food Consumption Statistics of 24 Countries quotes "Milk and milk products gave the highest correlation coefficient to heart disease, while sugar, animal proteins and animal fats came in second, third, and fourth, respectively! And Davies, in the Lancet quotes; "More patients who had suffered a myocardial infarction had elevated levels of antibodies against milk proteins than was found in a comparable group of patients without coronary heart disease." Finland ranks highest of all in milk consumption and mortality from heart disease." The Lancet, I, 1017-1020, 1979

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