Lifestyle changes play a major role in reducing cardiovascular disease
One of the researchers at this conference believes that, in the Nurse’s Health Study, 82% of CHD deaths could have been prevented with lifestyle changes. 82%. Think on that number. Essentially, here in the US CVD could drop off of the map of major causes of death. Knowing what we now know, there is absolutely NO excuse why CVD is still the major killer it is. None.
Vienna, Austria – Long-term studies on the effect of lifestyle changes on cardiovascular disease risk and mortality show that those who adopt a combination of several healthy habits achieve the greatest cardioprotective effect. Patients who stop smoking, follow a healthy diet, exercise daily, and drink a glass of wine or beer now and then are less likely to develop cardiovascular disease or die from it was the take-home message of a clinical seminar on the effect of lifestyle changes on cardiovascular health here at the European Society of Cardiology Congress 2003. Combination is the key “We cannot identify particular items that can be isolated, like a pill; rather, lifestyle changes have a synergetic effect,” said Dr Susana Sans Menendez (Barcelona, Spain), who was chairing the session.
In this respect, the latest data from the Nurses’ Health Study, a long-term evaluation of over 120 000 nurses from 11 US states started in 1976, showed a combined impact of the following lifestyle components on primary prevention: moderate or vigorous exercise at least 30 minutes daily, a diet low in trans-fatty acids but high in omega-3 fatty acids and folate, regular intake of alcohol, a low BMI, and smoking cessation. “A total of 82% of CHD deaths in the general population would have been prevented with adherence to this healthy lifestyle,” said Dr Karin Michels (Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA), who presented the latest results of their study at the meeting.