Friday, October 29, 2010

Mediterranean Style Diet Can Lessen Heart Disease Risk

Eating a Mediterranean-style diet can shield people from heart disease but it can also help heart patients stay healthy, according to research from Greece. A diet, including lots of fruits and vegetables, nuts, vegetable oils, low-fat dairy products, legumes, whole grains, and fish, has been shown to help shield people from heart disease and may also ward off certain cancers. But Dr. Christina Chrysohoou of the University of Athens and her colleagues said less information was available on whether the Mediterranean diet might be helpful for people who already have heart disease. To investigate, Chrysohoou and her team looked at 1,000 patients who had suffered heart attacks or severe chest pain while at rest or with only light exertion. They rated each patient on a scale of 0 to 55 based on how closely their eating matched the Mediterranean ideal. The study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, found nearly half of the patients experienced a second heart-related event within two years after their original hospital discharge. But patients with the most Mediterranean-style diets were at 31 percent lower risk of suffering another heart attack or experiencing chest pain during the first month after they were discharged from the hospital. They were only half as likely as those with the least Mediterranean eating habits to have another heart-related event within a year, and nearly 40 percent less likely to experience repeat heart problems within two years. For every additional point on the 55-point Mediterranean Diet Score, a person's risk of having another heart-related event over the next two years fell by 12 percent, the researchers found. Indian, Oct 24, 2010

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Oat Beta-Glucan Lowers LDL Cholesterol

TORONTO—Consuming at least 3g a day of bioactive beta-glucan from OatWell oat bran may significantly lower LDL-cholesterol levels in individuals who have high cholesterol levels, according to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The findings reveal beta-glucan affects LDL-cholesterol levels by increasing the viscosity of intestinal contents. Researchers followed men and women from Canada, Australia and the United Kingdom who consumed two servings of OatWell cereal daily for four weeks. At the end of four weeks, the study participants showed a 5.5% average decrease in their LDL-cholesterol levels. They also found there was no significant reduction in LDL-cholesterol in participants who consumed cereal that produced the lowest gut viscosity. The findings also revealed the extrusion process used to make OatWell cereals causes the beta-glucan to become more soluble and produce higher viscosity in the intestines. Natural Products Insider, Oct 22, 2010

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Pollution Affects More Than Your Sinuses

The fine particles of pollution that hang in the air can increase the risk for sudden cardiac arrest, according to a new study conducted by a team from Long Island Jewish (LIJ) Medical Center and The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research. Robert A. Silverman, MD, and his colleagues have been interested in the effects of ambient fine particulate matter on a number of medical conditions, including cardiovascular disease and asthma. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) keeps tabs on air pollution through dozens of strategically placed pollution sensors in cities and towns throughout the country. This data allowed the researchers to collect data on average 24-hour values of small particulates and other gaseous pollutants around New York City during the summer (when pollution is higher) and winter months. They then compared that data to the 8,216 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests that occurred between 2002 and 2006. Most people in the throes of a cardiac arrest do not survive in time for emergency medical service teams to save them. What they were looking for was simple: Were there more cardiac arrests on high pollution days than on lower pollution days? In the American Journal of Epidemiology, Dr. Silverman and his fellow researchers reported that for a 10ug/m3 rise in small particle air pollution, there was a four-to-10 percent increase in the number of out-of-hospital cardiac arrests. Red Orbit News, Oct 21, 2010

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Natural Cure #5: Oat Beta-Glucan

Beta-glucan is a soluble fiber that is derived from the cell walls of plants, algae, fungi, yeast and bacteria. Several studies have shown that beta-glucan changes the way the body’s immune system reacts by encouraging white blood cells to remain in a constant state of preparedness. This preparedness enhances the overall performance of the immune system and allows it to immediately attack invading organism before they cause any serious damage. The use of beta-glucan for health purposes is relatively new. Beta-glucan is often used for its cholesterol-lowering effects, its ability to control blood sugar, and as a supplemental cancer treatment. The Food and Drug Administration first recognized the health benefits of beta-glucan in 1997 when it passed a ruling allowing oat bran to be registered as a cholesterol-lowering food. The FDA recommended a daily dosage of 3 grams of beta-glucan for cholesterol-lowering effects. Nutritional Insider, Oct 19, 2010

Monday, October 25, 2010

Natural Cure #4: Red Yeast Rice

Red yeast rice contains naturally-occurring substances called monacolins. Monocolins, particularly one called lovastatin, is believed to be converted in the body to a substance that inhibits HMG-CoA reductase, an enzyme that triggers cholesterol production. This is the way the popular statin drugs work. Because of this action, red yeast rice products containing a higher concentration of monocolins have been developed and marketed as a natural product to lower cholesterol. The problem is that the primary ingredient in these supplements, lovastatin, is also the active pharmaceutical ingredient in prescription drugs for high cholesterol such as Mevacor. In fact, lovastatin was originally derived from another type of red yeast called Monascus ruber. When the FDA discovered that red yeast rice contained a substance found in prescription drugs, it banned red yeast rice products containing lovastatin. In August, 2007, the FDA issued a warning that several red yeast rice products still contained lovastatin. The manufacturers of these products have since recalled these products. Yet studies by UCLA Medical have shown that the Red Yeast products on the market today are still effective in lowering LDL levels., Oct 18, 2010

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Natural Cure #3: Policosanol

Policosanol is a mixture of alcohols isolated and refined from sugar cane. The main ingredient in Policosanol is octacosanol, but as the name implies, Policosanol is actually a mixture of many (hence the prefix "poli") alcohols, including hexacosanol, triacontanol and others. Patients who have taken Policosanol have shown increased levels of high-density lipoprotein or HDL, the "good" cholesterol. HDL actually helps carry cholesterol away from the arteries to the liver, where it is processed and excreted from the body. Policosanol has been used by millions of people in other countries and it appears to normalize cholesterol as well or better than cholesterol lowering drugs, without side effects. Efficacy and safety have been proven in numerous clinical trials. A large patient group of 437 patients in a double-blind, placebo-controlled study received either Policosanol or a placebo once a day for twelve weeks. The patients who had been given Policosanol showed a 25% reduction in LDL cholesterol, a 17% reduction in total cholesterol, and a 28% increase in HDL cholesterol. The placebo group showed no reduction in total cholesterol. Policosanol seems to be effective at lowering cholesterol on both men and women and in all age groups. With so many uses, a wealth of clinical research and a history of safe and effective use in patients, it is easy to see why Policosanol is one of the most exciting nutritional finds in some time.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Natural Cure #2: Beta-Sitosterol

Beta-sitosterol is a substance found in plants. Chemists call it a “plant sterol ester.” It is found in fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds. It is used to make medicine. Beta-sitosterol is used for heart disease and high cholesterol. It is also used for boosting the immune system and for preventing a variety of other diseases. In foods, beta-sitosterol is added to some margarines (Take Control, for example) that are designed for use as part of a cholesterol-lowering diet and for preventing heart disease. The federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) allows manufacturers to claim that foods containing plant sterol esters such as beta-sitosterol are for reducing the risk of coronary heart disease (CHD). This rule is based on the FDA’s conclusion that plant sterol esters may reduce the risk of CHD by lowering blood cholesterol levels. Although there is plenty of evidence that beta-sitosterol does lower cholesterol levels, there is no proof that long-term use actually lowers the risk of developing CHD. Web MD, Oct 15,2010

Friday, October 22, 2010

Natural Cure #1: Guggul

Guggul is the yellowish resin (or gum) that is produced by the mukul Commiphora mukul tree, a small, thorny plant that grows throughout northern India. Guggul is also referred as guggul gum, guggal, gugglesterone, guggul, gugulu and gum gugal. Guggul plays a major role in the traditional herbal medicine of India. It is often combined with other herbs and used in the treatment of arthritis, skin diseases, pains in the nervous system, obesity, digestive problems, infections in the mouth, and menstrual problems. The mukul myrrh tree is closely related to the Commiphora Mukul tree (or common myrrh). Myrrh was one of the first medicines with hieroglyphic notation of use during ancient Egyptian times depicting its many uses. With such a close relation, many scientists believe that Guggul may have many of the same properties as Myrrh as even their ancient status is similar. Indian researchers discovered an ancient Sanskrit medical text, Sushruta Samhita, in the 1960s. This classical medical text prescribed guggul for the treatment of medoroga, a disease that closely resembles the symptoms of high cholesterol and hardening of the arteries. Indian scientists subsequently tested animals and found that guggul gum both lowered cholesterol levels and protected against the development of hardening of the arteries. These trials culminated in a pilot study that examined guggul's effectiveness in humans. Although the evidence that it works remains preliminary, the Indian government was sufficiently impressed to approve guggul as a treatment for high cholesterol.
Wellness, Oct 15, 2010

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Thursday, October 21, 2010

Lowering Cholesterol Without Medication-Effective Natural Supplements

Lowering cholesterol without medication is now possible with certain natural supplements. Herbal supplements have gained a lot of popularity in the past few years and have been approved and recommended by doctors. This article will look at some effective natural cholesterol supplements. It is a known fact that people suffering with high cholesterol are at increased risk of coronary heart disease. Taking natural supplements will not only lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglyceride levels, but may also help improve the health of your cardiovascular system. Studies have shown that garlic extract, flax-seed and turmeric tablets have shown to be helpful in on patients with high cholesterol levels. One study showed that patients treated with garlic consistently showed a greater decrease in total cholesterol levels compared with those receiving placebo.1 Fish oil capsules are one of the top-selling products on the market today for one reason; they are effective in maintaining good health. Fish oil is loaded with essential fatty acids known as omega 3, which promotes a healthy heart. Research has shown that triglyceride (fat deposit) levels can be significantly lowered by taking fish oil supplements.2 People who follow a Mediterranean-style diet tend to have HDL or “good” cholesterol suggesting that fish oil can help increase the good cholesterol in your blood. You can take up to 2000 milligram of these capsules every day as part of a healthy diet. Of course, always consult your doctor starting on a dietary supplement. Artichoke extracts can also help the health of the heart according to extensive studies. According to an article on Prevention®, in one a German study, subjects were given 1800 milligrams of dry artichoke extract. RINF.COM NEWS, David Kamau, Oct 12, 2010

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Cholesterol-lowering supplements: Lower your numbers without prescription medication

If you're worried about your cholesterol and have already started exercising and eating healthier foods, you might wonder if adding a cholesterol-lowering supplement to your diet can help reduce your numbers. Although few natural products have been proven to reduce cholesterol, some might be helpful. With your doctor's OK, consider these cholesterol-lowering supplements and products: Artichoke extract:May reduce total cholesterol and LDL, or "bad," cholesterol, but may cause gas or an allergic reaction Barley: May reduce total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol without any adverse reactions. Garlic extract: May reduce total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, but may cause bad breath, body odor, heartburn, gas, nausea, vomiting or diarrhea.
Mayo Clinic Staff, Oct 5, 2010

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

High Risk Additions To A Low Carb Diet

Atkins-style low-carbohydrate diets help people lose weight, but people who simply replace the bread and pasta with calories from animal protein and animal fat may face an increased risk of early death from cancer and heart disease, a new study reports. This study found that the death rate among people who adhered most closely to a low-carb regimen was 12 percent higher over about two decades than with those who consumed diets higher in carbohydrates. But death rates varied, depending on the sources of protein and fat used to displace carbohydrates. Low-carb eaters who drew more protein and fat from vegetable sources like beans and nuts were 20 percent less likely to die over the period than people who ate a high-carbohydrate diet. But low-carb dieters who got most of their protein and fat from animal sources like red and processed meats were 14 percent more likely to die of heart disease and 28 percent more likely to die of cancer, the analysis found. The study, published Sept. 7 in Annals of Internal Medicine, analyzed data from more than 85,000 healthy women aged 34 to 59 who participated in the Nurses’ Health Study, and almost 45,000 men aged 40 to 75 who took part in the Health Professionals’ Follow-Up Study. Participants filled out questionnaires every four years. “If people want to follow a low-carb diet, this provides some guidance,” said the paper’s lead author, Teresa T. Fung, an associate professor of nutrition at Simmons College in Boston. “They should probably eat less meats.” New York Times Health, Oct 8, 2010

Monday, October 18, 2010

Cholesterol: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

September 11,2010 -- Dr. Lori Mosca was on a mission last week to educate the public how to prevent cardiovascular disease in Connecticut. She was on public radio and on CPTV public television. She is fairly unique in that as a highly trained M.D. she espouses the practice of people "knowing their numbers" and make early changes to lifestyle to avert future risk factors that could lead to heart disease. Why is this all important? "Because," she said, "Heart attacks are the number one killer of women". In many cases the very first episode will actually kill the patient. So, her mission is to educate the public, particularly women, on knowing when they're at risk. She adopts an approach to prevention as a means to delay having to treat heart disease later on. Dr. Mosca's credentials are place her in the category of a national expert on this subject. She is the Director of Preventive Cardiology at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, an Associate Professor of Medicine at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, and the founder and Director of the Columbia Center for Heart Disease Prevention in midtown Manhattan.Posted by, Oct 12, 2010

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Disparities In Heart Attack Treatment May Start In Emergency Room

African-American, Hispanic patients less likely to be categorized as needing urgent care
The well-documented disparities in cardiac care may begin almost as soon as patients arrive at hospital emergency rooms. In a study published in Academic Emergency Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) researchers report that African-American and Hispanic patients assessed for chest pain were less likely than white patients to be categorized as requiring immediate care, despite a lack of significant differences in symptoms. Such practices directly violate American College of Cardiology and American Heart Association guidelines specifying immediate electrocardiogram (ECG) examination for any patient with chest pain. "In this first nationally representative sample of emergency room patients, we found persistant racial, gender and insurance-coverage based differences in triage categorization and cardiac testing," says Lenny Lopez, MD, MPH, of the Mongan Institute for Health Policy at MGH, the study's lead author."Emergency room triage is the critical step that determines the whole cascade of clinical decisons and testing that happens next, so if patients are misclassfied on arrival, they won't receive the care they need when they need it." Red Orbit News, Oct 12, 2010

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Friday, October 15, 2010

More Advantages To Eating Red Onions

(CBS) Can eating red onions lower your risk for heart attack and stroke? A new study suggests the answer to that question may be yes. At least if you're a hamster. Scientists in Hong Kong fed crushed onions to hamsters that had been on a high-cholesterol diet. After eight weeks, the little guys' levels of low-densitiy lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol fell by 20 percent, the Daily Mail reported. That's good news, because elevated LDL cholesterol levels are linked to cardiovascular disease. At the same time, there was no decline in the hamsters' levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol - the good stuff. These findings "support the claim that the regular consumption of onion reduces the risk of coronary heart disease," lead researcher Zhen Yu Chen of the Chinese University of Hong Kong said, according to the newspaper. The onions - sweeter than the more familiar white variety - are a staple of Indian and Mediterranean cooking. Red onions may have other health benefits as well. They seem to contain compounds that slow the growth of colon and liver cancer cells, according to a 2004 study published in the "Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry." Does all this mean that people who avoid onions are missing out on their health benefits? It's enough to make you cry! CBS News Health, Oct 11, 2010

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Red Onion Effective Against Onsetting Heart Disease

Scientists have claimed that the humble red onion could help prevent heart disease. They have discovered that the vegetable - commonly used in Mediterranean and Indian cuisine - helps remove bad cholesterol from the body, which can cause heart attacks and strokes. At the same time red onions retain the body's good cholesterol, which help protect against heart disease Scientists in Hong Kong fed crushed-up red onions to hamsters who had all been put on a high-cholesterol diet. They found that after eight weeks levels of bad cholesterol, or low density lipoprotein (LDL), had dropped by an average of 20 per cent. "This results support the claim that the regular consumption of onion reduces the risk of coronary heart disease," the Daily Mail quoted Zhen Yu Chen, who was in charge of the research carried out at the Chinese University of Hong Kong as saying.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Web Tool To Check Cholesterol Is Doubted Effective

It could hardly be simpler: go to the Web, pull up a point-system tool, plug in a few numbers and instantly calculate your chances of having a heart attack over the next 10 years. A new study finds that a widely used version of the ubiquitous heart attack risk calculator is flawed, misclassifying 15 percent of patients who would use it — almost six million Americans, of whom almost four million are inappropriately shifted into higher-risk groups that are more likely to be treated with medication. And while the tool is easy to use, the authors say, the original calculator on which it is based is equally user-friendly for anyone with a computer — and significantly more reliable. The number of Americans potentially affected is in the millions. Ten percent of adults are shifted into higher-risk groups by the simplified system; at the same time, the system underestimates the risk for 5 percent of adults, who might benefit from more aggressive therapy. Women are disproportionately represented among the low-risk patients who are shifted into a higher-risk category. “Even if it’s just a 5 percent difference of undertreatment versus overtreatment — why use a less accurate method?” said Dr. Kevin Fiscella, a professor of family and preventive medicine at the University of Rochester. “Especially when it’s quite easy to use a more accurate method with electronic devices.” Dr. Fiscella is a co-author of an editorial in the same journal about the study. By RONI CARYN RABIN
Published: September 20, 2010

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Healthy Cholesterol Balance: What Does It Really Mean?

There are proteins found in blood (known as lipoproteins) that encage fat particles (cholesterol), and carry them throughout the bloodstream. This family of proteins consists of five members: chylomicrons, very low-density lipoprotein (VLDL), intermediate-density lipoprotein (IDL), and, the two most recognizable members, low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and high-density lipoprotein (HDL). You probably know this family of cholesterol-carrying proteins from your blood work reports. Generally, LDL and HDL are reported as specific numbers, while “total triglycerides” addresses the sum of the remaining lipoprotein levels.
While statin drugs may help reduce LDL levels, some only reduce risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD) by a mere 25%. Statins rarely address the other side of the cardiovascular equation — which is increasing HDL levels. Clinical research shows that increasing HDL can play a critical role in reducing your risk for CVD. To put this in more quantifiable terms: Increasing HDL by 1 mg/dL is said to reduce the risk of CVD by almost 3%. However. reducing LDL by 1 mg/dL has only been shown to reduce the risk of CVD by 1%. This may come as a shock, since most of the media focus on cholesterol points towards statins and the reduction of LDL cholesterol. However, increasing your HDL cholesterol is what could save your life.

September 23, 2010 By Casie Terry

Monday, October 11, 2010

Sugar, Not Only Salt, Linked To High Blood Pressure

THURSDAY, July 1 ( — Eating too much sodium can push your blood pressure into the danger zone. Now, researchers are reporting that eating too many sweets—or drinking too much soda—may have a similar effect. People who consume a diet high in fructose, a type of sugar and a key ingredient in high-fructose corn syrup, are more likely to have high blood pressure (hypertension), according to a new study. Drinking 2.5 cans or more of non-diet soda per day—or consuming an equivalent amount of fructose from other foods—increases your risk of hypertension by at least 30%, the study found. What’s more, the increased risk appears to be independent of other dietary habits, including sodium, carbohydrate, and overall calorie intake. The study, which appears in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, focused on foods containing high-fructose corn syrup and other added sugars, such as soda, fruit punch, cookies, candy, and chocolate. (Although fructose occurs naturally in fruits, the researchers excluded them because they contain other nutrients that are difficult to measure.)
By Amanda Gardner,

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Think Saturated Fat Contributes To Heart Disease? Think Again

Leading scientists re-examine the role of saturated fat in the diet For the past three decades, saturated fat has been considered a major culprit of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and as a result dietary advice persists in recommending reduced consumption of this macronutrient. However, new evidence shows that saturated fat intake has only a very limited impact on CVD risk -- causing many to rethink the "saturated fat is bad" paradigm. "The relationship between dietary intake of fats and health is intricate, and variations in factors such as human genetics, life stage and lifestyles can lead to different responses to saturated fat intake," said J. Bruce German, PhD, professor and chemist in the Department of Food Science and Technology, University of California at Davis. "Although diets inordinately high in fat and saturated fat are associated with increased cardiovascular disease risk in some individuals, assuming that saturated fat at any intake level is harmful is an over-simplification and not supported by scientific evidence." Professor Philippe Legrand of Agrocampus-INRA in France confirmed this by discussing various roles that different saturated fatty acids play in the body. His main conclusion was that saturated fats can no longer be considered a single group in terms of structure, metabolism and cellular function, and recommendations that group them together with regard to health effects need to be updated. Red Orbit News, October 1, 2010

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Serious Lung Condition Attributed To Statins

Health Canada has added to the ongoing debate over one of the country’s most-prescribed medications, saying it has received reports of eight cases of a potentially life threatening lung condition in patients taking cholesterol-busting statins. It has almost become a given that Canadians over a certain age will end up taking the drugs, 32 million prescriptions of which were sold here in 2009. Though there are questions about whether they are useful for people who have high cholesterol, but no sign of actual heart disease, their side effects have not been a huge issue. In the most recent issue of Health Canada’s Adverse-reaction newsletter, the department discusses the eight adverse reaction reports it has received in which statins were suspected of causing interstitial lung disease (ILD), a group of disorders that can cause scarring of the lungs. Six of the eight cases were reported as serious and two improved as soon as the patient was taken off statins. Such adverse-reaction reports are considered indicators of a possible problem, and far from conclusive. A 2008 review in the journal Chest, however, concluded that ILD is a possible new, though relatively rare, side effect of statins. Doctors should probably stop statin therapy in anyone with unexplained lung problems, the authors said. National Post, Tom Blackwell, Oct 5, 2010

Friday, October 8, 2010

Short Sleepers At Higher Risk Of Heart Disease.

People who sleep less than six hours a night may be three times more likely to develop a condition which leads to diabetes and heart disease, according to researchers at the University of Warwick.A study by a team of researchers from Warwick Medical School and the State University of New York at Buffalo has found short sleep duration is associated with an elevated risk of a pre-diabetic state, known as incident-impaired fasting glycaemia (IFG).IFG means that your body isn't able to regulate glucose as efficiently as it should. People with IFG have a greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes and are at an increased risk of heart disease and stroke.The study has just been published in the Annals of Epidemiology journal. The researchers looked at six years of data from 1,455 participants in the Western New York Health Study.All participants were aged between 35 and 79 years old and all completed a clinical examination that included measures of resting blood pressure, height and weight. They also completed questionnaires about their general health and wellbeing and sleeping patterns.Lead author at Warwick Medical School Dr Saverio Stranges said: “We found that short sleep, less than six hours, was associated with a significant, three-fold increased likelihood of developing IFG, compared to people who got an average of six to eight hours sleep a night.”

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Blueberries Help Fight Artery Hardening

Blueberries may help fight atherosclerosis, also known as hardening of the arteries, according to results of a preliminary U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)-funded study with laboratory mice. The research provides the first direct evidence that blueberries can help prevent harmful plaques or lesions, symptomatic of atherosclerosis, from increasing in size in arteries. Principal investigator Xianli Wu, based in Little Rock, Ark., with the USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Arkansas Children's Nutrition Center and with the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, led the investigation. The findings are reported in the current issue of the Journal of Nutrition. Atherosclerosis is the leading cause of two forms of cardiovascular disease--heart attacks and strokes. Cardiovascular disease is the number one killer of Americans. The study compared the size, or area, of atherosclerotic lesions in 30 young laboratory mice. Half of the animals were fed diets spiked with freeze-dried blueberry powder for 20 weeks; the diet of the other mice did not contain the berry powder. Red Orbit News, Sept 29, 2010

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Foods With Added Sugar Raise Cholesterol Levels

(NaturalNews) A diet lower in sugar corresponds directly to lower cholesterol and other markers of improved heart health, according to a study conducted by researchers from Emory University and published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. "We found that the lower the amount of added sugar people ate, the better their good cholesterol and their blood triglyceride levels," said researcher Miriam B. Vos, author of The No-Diet Obesity Solution for Kids. Researchers questioned 6,113 adults participating in the National Health and Nutrition Survey about what they had eaten the prior day, then used this information to calculate how much added sugar was included in each person's diet. Blood samples were also taken from each participant and evaluated for a number of cardiovascular risk factors. The researchers then divided participants into groups based on whether they got less than 5 percent of their total calories from added sugar, between 5 and 10 percent, between 10 and 17.5 percent, between 17.5 and 25 percent, or more than 25 percent. A full 18.5 percent of participants were getting a quarter or more of their daily calories from added sugar, amounting to 46 teaspoons of sugar per day. People in this group tended to be young, low-income, non-Hispanic blacks.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

High Cholesterol Causes Heart Disease!

By K.S. RAMKUMAR, RAMKUMAR@ARABNEWS.COM Published: Sep 8, 2010 16:12
Cardiologists say high cholesterol levels are a major cause of heart disease, the No. 1 cause of death in this part of the world. Over 25 percent of deaths in Saudi Arabia and the rest of the Gulf are caused by cardiovascular disease. In fact, recent studies show that more than half of the Gulf population suffers from abnormal cholesterol levels, a quarter has high blood pressure and 15 to 25 percent have diabetes. These numbers coupled with a rapid increase in the rate of obesity adds up to alarming statistics. Substantiating this is Dr. Omar K. Hallak, board member, Emirates Cardiac Society, and consultant interventional cardiologist at the chief intervention cardiology department, American Hospital, Dubai. “Most patients don’t achieve the desired reduction in their cholesterol levels because they don’t follow the treatment, such as diet and exercise recommendations, despite being treated with cholesterol-lowering medication. Like any muscle, the heart needs a constant supply of oxygen and nutrients, which are carried to it by the blood in the coronary arteries. Narrowing of the arteries decreases that supply and can cause angina (chest pain) when the heart muscle does not receive enough oxygen. Cholesterol plaques can rupture, resulting in a blood clot formation that completely blocks the artery, stopping all blood flow and causing a heart attack, in which heart muscle cells die from lack of oxygen and nutrients. High cholesterol is more common in men younger than 55 years and in women older than 55 years. The risk for high cholesterol increases with age.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Americans Not Alone With High Cholesterol

Thirty somethings in metros found to have high cholesterol levels - BS Reporter / Chennai/ Kochi September 25, 2010, 0:42 IST

Indians are at a high risk of coronary heart disease, suggests a pan-India survey conducted by Metropolis Healthcare Private Limited ahead of the World Heart Day. The survey found that a majority of people above 30 have alarmingly high cholesterol levels. The survey covered major cities and wes divided into four zones -- South, North, East and West. Mumbai, Pune, Ahmedabad, Indore, Surat in the West zone, Delhi in the North zone, Chennai, Bangalore, Coimbatore and Thissur in the South zone and Kolkata in the East zone were part of the survey. It screened 35,566 people and found that other than the genetic factor, obesity and sedentary lifestyle were the main factors for Indians becoming prone to the Coronary Artery Disease (CAD). The survey found Delhi to be the capital for a large number of young people with high risk of coronary artery diseases, followed by Bangalore and Mumbai. In Delhi, a large percentage of the 5,721 respondents, which included men and women aged between 30 and 40, were found in the highest risk group for heart disease.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Grouchy People Risk Heart Disease and Heart Problems

TUESDAY, Sept. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Heart patients with a pessimistic "Type D" personality may be at increased risk for future cardiovascular problems, according to a new review article. U.S. researchers analyzed data from more than 6,000 patients in 49 studies that looked at the link between heart and psychological health and Type D personality, which is characterized by negative emotions, pessimism and social inhibition. The analysis revealed that heart patients with a Type D personality had a three-fold increased risk for future cardiovascular problems, such as peripheral artery disease, angioplasty or bypass procedures, heart failure, heart transplantation, heart attack or death. The article is published Sept. 14 in the journal Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes. "Type D patients tend to experience increased levels of anxiety, irritation and depressed mood across situations and time, while not sharing these emotions with others because of fear of disapproval," senior author Viola Spek, a researcher at Tiburg University in the Netherlands, said in an American Heart Association news release. "We found that Type D personality predicts (illness and death) in these patients, independent of traditional medical risk factors." The researchers also found that patients with a Type D personality had a three-fold increase in the long-term risk of psychological conditions such as depression, anxiety or poor mental health.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Lower Your Cholesterol, Reduce The Risk Of Type II Diabetes

By now, most of us know that high cholesterol levels can lead to heart disease. We also know that we need to moderate or reduce our intake of fat and get our levels checked periodically by means of a simple blood test. The reality though is many continue to eat poorly, gain weight, fail to exercise and compound their health problems regarding high cholesterol, diabetes and heart disease. Are we really happy with that person who looks back at us in the mirror? If you haven’t had your cholesterol level checked in awhile, it’s time to go to the doctor. A simple blood test can tell your exact levels of good and bad cholesterol, and your doctor can tell you your health status, and describe how poor choices are increasing your risk for Type II diabetes and heart disease. Most people know about the connection between high cholesterol and diabetes. But now scientists are finding evidence that diabetes itself wreaks havoc with cholesterol, significantly increasing the likelihood of a heart attack or stroke even higher. The close ties between these two risk factors means that if you are diabetic, you have to be extremely vigilant about controlling your cholesterol. On the reverse side of this, if you have high cholesterol, your likelihood of developing diabetes increases dramatically. Indian Country Today, Sept 23, 2010