Air Pollution Risks

Using satellite data and ground measurements, researchers in New England have shown that the elderly are at increased risk for hospitalization after long-term exposure to fine particle air pollution. For each 10 µg/m3 increase in long-term exposure to particulates measuring <2.5 microns, there was a 3.12% increase in cardiovascular disease, 3.49% increase in stroke, and 6.33%…

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Junk Foods or Pathogens?

Canadian researchers have suggested high-calorie foods once considered "treats" be renamed "pathogens" because they are so readily available around the clock. Dietary patterns high in these sugary and salty foods are associated with hypertension, obesity, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. These authors believe that "junk food" is too mild a term for these deadly delights, and take the…

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Interarm BP Differences Increase Risks

A small, British study has revealed that interarm differences in systolic blood pressure of 10mm Hg or more are associated with 3-4 fold greater risks of cardiovascular and cerebrovascular events including all-cause death. It is suspected that interarm differences are associated with peripheral vascular disease. This study needs to be replicated in larger studies to better…

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Healthy Habits Reduce Risk Of Cardiovascular, Cancer, And All-Causes Mortality

The Shanghai Women’s Health Study followed approximately 71,000 Chinese women aged 40-70 for 9 years. Among participants, common lifestyle risk factors of early death included physical inactivity, abdominal obesity, being overweight or obese, exposure to spousal tobacco smoke, and eating few fruits and vegetables. When participants reversed these risk factors, they exhibited a striking life-extending effect, especially in…

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Declining Fitness Increases Risks

Middle-aged men who maintained or increased their fitness over 11 years experienced 30% and 40% reductions, respectively, in cardiovascular disease deaths and all-cause mortality--even without losing weight. When fitness declined during the study period, risk of dying increased.PositiveTip: What are you doing to stay fit? Make at least 30 minutes of physical activity a part of your…

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Young Shift Workers May Have Higher Risk of CVD

Shift workers younger than 40 years of age were found to have significantly higher levels of cortisol ("stress" hormone) compared to their day worker counterparts. This small Dutch study also found that shift workers weighed significantly more. These observations could place them at higher risk of metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease.PositiveTip: The lack of regularity…

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Sitting 4+ Hours A Day Can Be Deadly

A study of nearly 9000 Australians compared those who watched 2 hours or less of TV per day to those who watched more than 4 hours. Those watching the most had a 46% increased risk in death from all causes, and an 80% increased risk for death by cardiovascular disease. This connection stayed consistent even after…

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TV Time Can Cut Life Short

Researchers in Australia followed the lifestyle habits of almost 9000 adults for more than six years. They found that each hour of daily TV viewing was connected with an 11% increased risk for death from all causes, an 18% higher risk for cardiovascular deaths, and even a 9% increase in death from cancer.PositiveTip: The human body was…

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Statins Role in Primary Prevention Questioned

Evidence is strong that statins benefit those with known cardiovascular disease (CVD). However, they are frequently prescribed for primary prevention of cardiovascular disease in those without CVD but with a high risk for it. European investigators combined results for 65,000 high-risk only patients and found no significant improvement in risk.PositiveTip: True primary prevention of heart…

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Brushing Your Teeth May Reduce Your Risk of Heart Disease

In Scotland, researchers followed almost 12,000 adults for 8 years in a study linking good oral health with a lower risk of heart disease. After adjusting for confounding factors, people who brushed their teeth less than once a day were 70% more likely to suffer heart disease compared to those who brushed twice a day.The…

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