Heart Disease

 

Choosing Kindness

heart disease Heart disease is our nation’s number one killer! The gradual clogging, hardening and damage done to the interior walls of our blood vessels are the primary cause of heart attacks and strokes. This process of atherosclerosis, the hardening of the arteries, results in poor circulation to the extremities, the brain and other organs.

Approximately 50% of men and 64% of women who died suddenly of coronary heart disease had no previous symptoms of this disease.

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Doctors Should Start Advocating Dietary Options to Treat Heart Disease

treat heart disease While heart-healthy diets are ridiculed as ‘no fun’ or extreme, the medical community pushes more pharmaceuticals and costly invasive cardiac treatments. Neither is working, says Dr. Daniela Drake.

“I dropped dead three years ago,” John Tanner told me recently. “I just collapsed when I was taking my daily jog.” Luckily for Tanner—who’s now very much alive—his fall was witnessed and resuscitation efforts began immediately.

Sudden cardiac death, which Tanner suffered, strikes 350,000 people a year, killing nine of 10 victims. This year, 2013, marks the two-year anniversary of Medicare’s coverage of intensive cardiac rehabilitation, a diet and lifestyle program for people already diagnosed with heart disease. But many of those affected don’t know they have the disease, leaving some physicians wondering if we shouldn’t extend these preventive programs to the general public.

Our current preventive routine focuses on treating such cardiac risk factors as hypertension and cholesterol. While that may have some positive health effects, aggressive medical therapy is also a boondoggle for drug companies. Indeed, blood pressure and cholesterol meds account for nearly a quarter of the four billion prescriptions written annually. Cholesterol-lowering statin drugs routinely reach blockbuster status, selling more than $1 billion a year. In one year alone, Lipitor drove $12.9 billion in sales, a blockbuster 13 times over.

An atherosclerotic plaque is not made of concrete. It can be removed rather easily. So when you start controlling your knife and fork, keeping them from scooping up gobs of grease and clumps of cholesterol-filled fats, you stop promoting the disease.

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