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Optimism may improve heart health Don't worry, be happy: It may save your life
Date: 2013-07-28 19:54:34

A new study from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine has discovered that being optimistic may significantly decrease a person's risk of heart issues. While stress and its management have long been associated with cardiovascular disease, this is the first report of its kind to link a specific mentality with heart attack risk.

"If you are by nature a cheerful person and look on the bright side of things, you are more likely to be protected from cardiac events," said Lisa Yanek, lead author of the study. "A happier temperament has an actual effect on disease, and you may be healthier as a result."

Researchers analyzed lab test data from roughly 7,400 U.S. citizens and discovered that people who are cheerful, relaxed, energized and content with their lives had a greatly reduced chance of sudden cardiac failure, heart attack and other cardiovascular complications, some by as much as 50 percent.

Yanek noted that while a clear correlation had been made, the team was not able to determine the cause and effect relationship that optimism had on heart health. However, she said that people who have that mindset tend to have that quality from birth, and most find it difficult to drastically change their temperament.

Lowering heart disease risk... Full Story

Study: Breakfast most important meal of the day Study: Breakfast is the most important meal of the day
Date: 2013-07-28 18:52:44

According to new research from Harvard University, skipping breakfast is not only a bad idea, it could adversely affect your health. Some of the largest risk factors for heart disease include high blood pressure and high levels of cholesterol, and university scientists suspected that not eating breakfast was linked to one or more of these factors.

By examining past data from blood pressure and cholesterol tests along with other measurements of heart health, the researchers assessed the well-being of almost 27,000 men who worked as health professionals. Of those men, 1,572 developed heart disease. The reported noted that previous research has found that those who skipped breakfast were 15 percent more likely to experience significant weight gain, and 21 percent more likely to be diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes.

"We've focused so much on the quality of food and what kind of diet everyone should be eating, and we don't talk as often on the manner of eating," stated Suzanne Steinbaum, M.D., preventive cardiologist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York. "This study is not even discussing the type of food. It's just talking about behavior and lifestyle choice. Part of heart-healthy living is eating breakfast because that prevents you from doing a lot of other unhealthy things."

Why skipping breakfast is bad... Full Story

Researchers say eggs do not cause high cholesterol Researchers say eggs do not cause high cholesterol
Date: 2013-07-23 15:48:18

Cholesterol tests may not be necessary for young people: Researchers at the University of Granada have determined that eating eggs does not cause high cholesterol in adolescents, despite the long-time belief that more than two eggs a week would increase levels.

"Health professionals traditionally insisted that eating eggs increased cholesterol levels, so in recent decades there has been a tendency to restrict intake championed by various public health organizations," said Alberto Maldonado, lead author of the study.

The study examined possible correlations between egg intake and the primary risk factors for heart disease, including high blood pressure, extra body fat, lipid profile and insulin resistance. The researchers also took into account how frequently the adolescents engaged in physical activity.

Adolescents from nine European countries were analyzed for the report, which found no link between eating more than a certain amount of eggs and higher serum cholesterol levels. Nor did they find a connection between egg consumption and a heightened risk of cardiovascular disease, regardless of how often the subjects took part in physical activity.

Maldonado noted that his team's findings confirmed recent studies conducted with healthy adults that imply that eating up to seven eggs every week is not correlated with an increased risk of heart disease. He also stated that further study was necessary to conclude similar results with higher amounts of eggs.

Eggs beneficial for heart disease prevention ... Full Story

HDL and Cheerios: The benefits of cholesterol testing and fiber consumption Cholesterol and Cheerios: The benefits of cholesterol testing and fiber consumption
Date: 2013-07-05 12:29:50

Cholesterol testing may help curb the epidemic of high blood pressure affecting adults in the U.S., according to a recent study of more than 17,000 American adults performed by the American Heart Association and published in the journal Circulation.

The study found that high blood pressure, also known as hypertension, affects nearly one-third of U.S. adults and causes a two-fold increase in the likelihood that an individual will develop heart disease over his or her lifetime. Former research has shown that treating high blood pressure mitigates the risk by one-quarter. Likewise, treating high cholesterol in individuals with high blood pressure can reduce the risk by more than one-third. The present study endorsed a therapeutic regimen of managing both blood pressure and cholesterol and also found that prescribing medications to better manage blood pressure and cholesterol may improve the health of older individuals, individuals with diabetes, individuals with cardiovascular disease and Hispanic or African-American individuals.

Receive a cholesterol test... Full Story

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