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myocardial infarction

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Heart Attack Risk Linked to Emotions

Short-bouts of intense physical activity and high emotions may be deadly.

A study of over 12,000 individuals who had experienced their first myocardial infarction (MI) found being emotionally upset and engaging in intense physical activity may trigger an MI. This case-crossover study demonstrated that compared to the control period, the risk increased 2.31 times for extreme physical exertion, 2.44 times for anger and emotional upset, and 3.05 times when both were present. This evidence corroborates the Biblical story of Nabal, his anger, and subsequent death (I Samuel 25).

PositiveTip: Avoid intense emotional upset and/or short bouts of extreme physical activity.

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Healthy Lifestyle Can Prevent MI

Healthier lifestyles can lower the risk of myocardial infarction.

Swedish investigators following 20,000 healthy men for 11 years found that each "low risk" lifestyle factor (healthy diet, no smoking, physically active, not overweight, and moderate alcohol use) was independently associated with a lower risk for myocardial infarction (MI). Those with all five healthier lifestyle factors experienced an 86% lower risk. Sadly, less than 1% of the study group followed all five of these. (NOTE: PositiveChoices.com does not believe any amount of alcohol is a part of a healthy lifestyle.)

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Multivitamin Supplements No Benefit to CVD Risk

Myocardial infarction, stroke, and death not affected by multivitamin supplements.

A randomized controlled study involving almost 15,000 male physicians over a median period of 11 years found no difference between those taking commercial daily multivitamins and the placebo group.

PositiveTip: Choosing foods rich in vitamins and minerals, such as vegetables, fruit, and whole grains, is still the best way of meeting nutrient needs.

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Road Traffic Noise and Heart Attack Risk

Heart attacks more common with higher traffic noise levels over 10 years.

Researchers in Denmark have found that chronic exposure to traffic noise may increase the risk of a heart attack--independent of air pollution levels. Although they were unable to establish this as a cause of heart attacks, they found that for every 10-decibel (dB) increase in traffic noise near home, the risk of having a heart-attack was 12% higher. Perhaps there is wisdom in the words of Isaiah: “Keep silence before Me, O coastlands, and let the people renew their strength!" (Isaiah 41:1).

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Calcium Supplement Caution

Use of calcium supplements may increase risk of heart attack.

German researchers have found that calcium supplements are associated with almost double the risk for a heart attack, compared to those who did not supplement. Nearly 24,000 residents aged 35 to 64 were followed for 11 years. Those who took calcium supplements had a 1.88 increase in risk for heart attack. Calcium from dietary sources did not increase risk.

PositiveTip: Calcium supplements should only be taken with caution. It is best to get this nutrient from a balanced diet.

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Avoid the CCU: Be Active!

Owning a car and TV may raise your risk of a heart attack.

Leisure time and on-the-job physical activity is associated with less likelihood of a hearrt attack. A 52 country case-control study involving more than 10,000 individuals has revealed, after controlling for confounding factors, that both light and moderate activity reduced the risk of acute mycardial infarction (MI) compared to sedentary individuals. Researchers also found that owning a car, a radio/stero and a TV were associated with higher MI rates.

PostiveTip: Put a stop to sedentary living--become active and avoid the coronary care unit!

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K2, Synthetic Cannabis May Cause Teen Heart Attacks

Synthetic marijuana use may cause heart attacks in teens.

Myocardial infaction is very rare in teens, but physicians are now reporting that K2, a designer drug made from a collection of herbs and spices treated with a sythetic cannabinoid, is causing insufficient blood supply to the heart muscle of teens with no previous health problems or family history. K2 gives a marijuana-like effect without showing up on drug screens and is surprisingly easy to obtain.

PositiveTip: Parents and physicians should discourage teens from using any real or synthetic drugs.

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Calcium Supplements Have Excess Risks

Calcium supplements' small benefits to bone strength must be weighed against the cardiovascular risks.

There is evidence that supplemental calcium may hasten vascular calcification and can raise the risk of heart attacks in otherwise healthy older women. An analysis of 15 double-blind, randomized trials with more than 8000 participants taking at least 500 mg of calcium supplements each day or a placebo, has shown significantly higher rates of heart attack in those taking calcium supplements. The data suggests that treating 1000 people with calcium supplements for 5 years would only prevent 26 fractures but would cause 14 additional heart attacks.

PositiveTip: Taking calcium supplements? You should talk to your physician about the small bone benefits against the cardiovascular risks.

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Working Too Much is Bad for Your Heart!

Working overtime is linked with a significant increase in heart disease risk.

After following 6000 British male and female civil servants who were free of coronary heart disease (CHD) at the beginning of the study for about 11 years, investigators report that those who worked 3-4 extra hours per day faced a 60% increase in risk of heart disease, compared to those who didn't work any overtime. No increased risk was seen in those who worked only 1-2 hours of overtime.

PositiveTip: Maintaining work-life balance is vital to both short-term and long-term wellness and longevity.