Seniors See 35% Reduction in Cardiovascular Death Risk from Eating Heart Healthy
AHA Heart Healthy diet
offers significant protection for older people with cardiovascular problems from
Dec. 6, 2012 – A new
study of senior citizens with cardiovascular disease has found those who
ate a heart-healthy diet significantly reduced their chances of future
cardiovascular events. And, their risk of dying from such an event was
reduced by 35 percent.
“At times, patients
don’t think they need to follow a healthy diet since their medications
have already lowered their blood pressure and cholesterol — that is
wrong,” said Mahshid Dehghan, Ph.D., study author and a nutritionist at
the Population Health Research Institute, McMaster University in
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.
modification has benefits in addition to those seen with aspirin,
angiotensin modulators, lipid-lowering agents and beta blockers.”
The report on the
study is published in the American Heart Association journal
For the study,
31,546 adults (average age 66.5) with cardiovascular disease or end
organ damage were asked how often they consumed milk, vegetables,
fruits, grains, fish, meat and poultry in the past 12 months. They were
also asked about lifestyle choices such as alcohol consumption, smoking
and exercise. Total scores were determined by daily fruits, vegetables,
grains and milk consumed and the ratio of fish to meats consumed.
During a follow-up
of nearly five years, participants experienced 5,190 cardiovascular
Heart Healthy Diet...
of a healthy diet, an adult consuming 2,000 calories daily should aim
At least 4.5 cups a day
(preferably oily fish):
At least two 3.5-ounce servings a week
Fiber-rich whole grains:
At least three 1-ounce-equivalent servings a day
Less than 1,500 mg a day
No more than 450 calories (36 ounces) a week
Nuts, legumes and seeds:
At least 4 servings a week
No more than 2 servings a week
Less than 7% of total energy intake
American Heart Association recommends that you eat a wide variety of
nutritious foods daily. Remember, even simple, small changes can make a
big difference in living a better life.
More at AHA Nutrition Center
those who ate a heart-healthy diet had a:
35 percent reduction
in risk for cardiovascular death;
14 percent reduction
in risk for new heart attacks;
28 percent reduction
in risk for congestive heart failure; and
19 percent reduction
in risk for stroke.
Food habits in
different regions of the world varied considerably; however, a healthy
diet was associated with prevention of recurrent cardiovascular disease
throughout the world in countries with different economic levels,
A diet rich in
vegetables and fruits with a higher ratio of
fish to meats appeared to be more beneficial for preventing heart
disease than for preventing cancer, fractures or injury.
advise their high-risk patients to improve their diet and eat more
vegetables, fruits, grains and fish,” Dehghan said.
substantially reduce cardiovascular recurrence beyond drug therapy alone
and save lives globally.”
Andrew Mente, Ph.D.; Koon K. Teo, Ph.D.; Peggy Gao, M.Sc.; Peter
Sleight, D.M.; Gilles Dagenais, M.D.; Alvaro Avezum, M.D.; Jeffrey L.
Probstfield, M.D.; Tony Dans, M.D.; and Salim Yusuf, D.Phil. Author
disclosures are on the manuscript.
funded the study.
>> For more
information on health eating visit the
AHA Nutrition Center .
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