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Ski Your Way to a Healthier Aging Brain

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Cross-country skiing may be good for your brain, a new study suggests.

Previous research found that participants of the Vasaloppet, a popular long-distance, cross-country skiing race in Sweden, have a lower risk of heart attack, but potential brain benefits have been unclear.

This new research compared the brain health of about 200...

Especially in the Young, Cholesterol Is No Friend to the Heart

TUESDAY, Dec. 3, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Rising levels of cholesterol among young adults is strongly tied to long-term odds for the number one killer, heart disease, a new study finds.

The new global study involved data on more than 400,000 people from 38 different trials. Their health was tracked for an average of more than 13 years, but some were followe...

AHA News: Vegan Diet May Decrease Heart Disease, Stroke Risk in African Americans

TUESDAY, Dec. 3, 2019 (American Heart Association News) -- Following a vegan diet for five weeks may decrease risk factors for heart disease, new research shows.

The study included 50 African Americans who were asked to eat only prepared meals delivered to their homes. A cardiovascular risk calculator was used to assess their risk of heart attack or stroke over the next 10 years. For...

Heart Attack at 44 Helped Her Realize Diabetes' Dangers

MONDAY, Dec. 2, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Christina Herrera was 44 years old when she felt the symptoms of a heart attack.

"I was sweating, having heart palpitations and out of breath," the high school teacher said. "My school nurse said, 'I have to call an ambulance for you,' and I said I'd go later. I had to get back to my class. She said, 'You have to go now.'"

It's a goo...

Heart Attack or Not? Apple Watch Might Give the Answer

MONDAY, Nov. 25, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A doctor armed with your Apple Watch might be able to tell if you're suffering from a heart attack, researchers report.

A physician should be able to gather enough heart rhythm data by placing the watch's sensors on different parts of your body, to judge whether a person is in the middle of a heart attack, the study found.

"Any Apple...

Expensive Device Used in Heart Surgeries Might Pose Dangers: Study

MONDAY, Nov. 18, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A pricey high-tech pump that maintains blood flow during heart procedures could be more dangerous to patients than its low-tech predecessor, a pair of new studies finds.

The Impella device is associated with an increased risk of death, bleeding and stroke among patients undergoing angioplasty to re-open clogged arteries, two separate research ...

Gene Test Might Someday Gauge Your Cardiac Arrest Risk

MONDAY, Nov. 18, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Sudden cardiac death is terrifying because it's exactly that -- one minute you're fine and the next you're facing death, with no warning and no prior symptoms.

Now, new research shows the secret to who's at risk for cardiac arrest and who isn't could lie in people's genes. And a gene test might someday help predict who's most endangered, accor...

Study Casts Doubt on Angioplasty, Bypass for Many Heart Patients

SUNDAY, Nov. 17, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Bypass operations, angioplasty and the placement of artery-opening stents: For decades, millions of Americans have undergone these expensive, invasive procedures to help treat clogged vessels.

However, the results of a large and long-awaited clinical trial suggests that, in most cases, these procedures may not have provided any benefit over m...

Cheap, Older Gout Drug Could Be a Lifesaver After Heart Attack

SUNDAY, Nov. 17, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A cheap drug that's been around for centuries as a gout treatment might also shield heart attack survivors from future heart crises, new trial results show.

The drug, colchicine, is derived from a plant called the autumn crocus, researchers explained Saturday at the annual meeting of the American Heart Association, in Philadelphia.

I...

Too Few Heart Patients Getting Good Results From Medicines Alone

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 13, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A rigorous, new international study finds that, despite doctors' best efforts, many heart patients given standard drugs aren't meeting goals to lower their cholesterol and blood pressure levels.

The study involved nearly 4,000 patients, averaging 64 years of age, treated at centers around the world.

The researchers found that, one...

Cancer Risk May Rise After Heart Attack

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 13, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Here's some worrisome news for folks who manage to survive a heart attack: New research suggests they might be far more vulnerable to developing cancer down the road.

People who suffered a heart health scare -- a heart attack, heart failure or a dangerously erratic heart rhythm -- had a more than sevenfold increased risk for subsequently de...

AHA News: Millions Unaware of Common Heart Attack Symptoms

TUESDAY, Nov. 12, 2019 (American Heart Association News) -- Millions of Americans don't know any heart attack symptoms or how to best respond to them, according to a new study that said certain socioeconomic groups are particularly at risk.

About 805,000 Americans have a heart attack each year, and about 15% of them die from it. Because early intervention is so critical, health o...

Some Jobs Are Better for Women's Hearts Than Others

TUESDAY, Nov. 12, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Could your chosen profession determine the health of your heart?

It could certainly have an influence, new research suggests.

Scientists analyzed data from more than 65,000 postmenopausal women in the United States and found that several jobs were associated with poor heart health.

Compared to women with other jobs, the ri...

Frequent Pot Smokers Face Twice the Odds for Stroke

MONDAY, Nov. 11, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Smoking pot doesn't do your heart or your brain any favors, a pair of new studies shows.

Frequent pot smokers are more than twice as likely to suffer a stroke compared with those who don't partake, the first study found.

They're also more likely to be hospitalized for a dangerously erratic heart rhythm, according to the second study....

Evening Meals Could Harm the Female Heart, Study Shows

MONDAY, Nov. 11, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Late dinners and heavy evening snacking do no favors for women's hearts, a new study suggests.

Researchers at New York City's Columbia University found that those who ate more of their daily calories in the evening had a higher risk of heart disease.

One cardiologist who looked over the new findings wasn't surprised by the effect.

Heart Cells Change During Spaceflight

THURSDAY, Nov. 7, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- It sounds scary, but the changes are only temporary: Researchers report that heart cells grown in space showed altered gene expression.

But just 10 days after being returned to Earth, the heart cells returned to normal.

Once stem cells grew into heart cells aboard the International Space Station, their exposure to microgravity chang...

Sleepless Nights Could Raise Heart Risks

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 6, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Sleep problems could increase your risk for heart attack, stroke and other heart and brain diseases, a new study suggests.

It included 487,200 people in China, average age 51, with no history of stroke or heart disease. They were asked if they had any of these problems three or more times a week: trouble falling asleep or staying asleep; wak...

Do You Take Biotin Supplements? They Could Affect Your Medical Tests

TUESDAY, Nov. 5, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Biotin supplements, often taken to improve hair, skin and nails, can interfere with the results of some critical lab tests, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration warned Tuesday.

The FDA is particularly concerned about biotin interference causing a falsely low result for troponin, which is key in diagnosing heart attack. The agency said in a st...

Weight-Loss Surgery Protects Heart Patients From Future Trouble

TUESDAY, Nov. 5, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- If you're an obese heart patient, weight-loss surgery might be good medicine for you.

New research suggests it significantly reduces the risk of heart failure and fatal heart attack in this vulnerable group.

"Our findings suggest, for the first time, that bariatric [weight-loss] surgery can prevent the development of systolic heart f...

Protect Your Heart Through the Holiday Season

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 30, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- It's never too soon to take steps to safeguard your heart health, and that includes being aware of seasonal heart attack triggers.

Researchers are trying to understand why, but studies done around the world have noted spikes in deaths from heart-related events during the holiday season.

Unlike deaths from the flu, they don't seem...

Most Widely Prescribed Blood Pressure Med Might Not Be Best Option: Study

FRIDAY, Oct. 25, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Millions of Americans take an ACE inhibitor to help curb their high blood pressure -- in fact, these drugs are the most widely used antihypertensives in America.

However, a new international study of nearly 5 million patients is casting doubt on the notion that the drugs are as effective as another class of blood pressure medicines.

...

Bedtime May Be Best Time for Blood Pressure Meds

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 23, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Taking blood pressure medications at bedtime rather than in the morning nearly halves the risk of dying from a heart attack, stroke or heart failure, a large, new study finds.

Researchers in Spain followed more than 19,000 adults with high blood pressure. They found that people who took all their blood pressure meds at night had lower blood...

Smartphone App Gets Heart Patients to Follow Their Rx

MONDAY, Oct. 21, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Forget doctor's instructions: New research shows a smartphone app is the best way to get heart patients to remember to take their medicines.

Heart attack survivors are typically prescribed medications to prevent another attack, but one in four stop taking at least one drug within 30 days after leaving the hospital. That increases the chance o...

Depression, Anxiety Can Dampen Efforts to Recover From a Heart Attack

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 16, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Recovering from a heart attack can be tough, but new research suggests that depression, anxiety and stress can make it even tougher.

"Anxiety may lead to fear of another cardiac event and stop people from being active," said study author Angela Rao, from the University of Technology Sydney in Australia. "Depression and anxiety can also impa...

How Does Early Menopause Affect a Woman's Heart?

THURSDAY, Oct. 10, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Menopause before age 50 puts women at increased risk of nonfatal heart conditions, and the earlier menopause occurs, the greater the risk, new research suggests.

Researchers analyzed data from more than 300,000 women who were part of 15 studies around the world, and found that women who reached menopause before age 50 were more likely to hav...

Recovering From Heart Attack, Sen. Bernie Sanders Says 'Pay Attention' to Symptoms

TUESDAY, Oct. 8, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- "I must confess, I was dumb," Sen. Bernie Sanders said Tuesday, referring to his decision to ignore recent signs that he was putting too much strain on his heart.

Sanders left a Las Vegas hospital on Friday after being admitted with chest pains last Tuesday. His doctors have said the 78-year-old suffered a heart attack.

Sanders start...

Your Furry Best Friend Might Extend Your Life

TUESDAY, Oct. 8, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Don't get too mad at that new puppy who piddled on the rug or chewed up your favorite slippers.

In the long run, that scamp is going to help you live a longer and healthier life.

A pair of new reports found that dog owners have a lower risk of early death than people without canine companionship, particularly when it comes to dying f...

Have Heart Disease? Exercise Will Help at Any Age

TUESDAY, Oct. 8, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- If you are older and you have heart disease, you might think you should take it easy. But new research suggests the opposite is true.

Exercise is especially beneficial for patients who have a physical impairment, the study authors found.

"Aging is associated with several factors such as increased inflammation or oxidative stress that...

Sen. Bernie Sanders Leaves Hospital; Doctors Confirm He Had Heart Attack

SATURDAY, Oct. 5, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Senator Bernie Sanders left a Las Vegas hospital on Friday after being admitted with chest pains on Tuesday; his presidential campaign is now saying the 78-year-old suffered a heart attack.

Sanders experienced chest pain at a campaign event and received two stents to open a blocked artery. He has cancelled public events for the time being,

Sen. Bernie Sanders Gets Two Stents for Artery Blockage

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 2, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Senator Bernie Sanders was treated for a blocked artery after suffering chest pain on the campaign trail Tuesday evening.

The 78-year-old presidential hopeful received two stents to open the blockage. He has cancelled public events for the time being, The New York Times reported Wednesday.

"Senator Sanders is conversing and ...

Fish Oil Supplements May Do Your Heart Good

MONDAY, Sept. 30, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Millions of Americans pop a fish oil supplement each day, hoping to bolster their heart health. Now, research suggests they may be on the right track.

The most up-to-date review of data from 13 prior studies found daily omega-3 fish oil supplement use tied to a significant lowering of risk for heart attack, according to a team led by Dr. JoAn...

Evidence Builds That Optimism Might Lengthen Your Life

FRIDAY, Sept. 27, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A sunny outlook on life may do more than make you smile: New research suggests it could also guard against heart attacks, strokes and early death.

In the review of 15 studies that collectively involved almost 230,000 men and women, the findings were remarkably consistent, the study authors added.

"We found that optimists had a 35...

Mental Ills May Put Veterans at Higher Odds for Heart Trouble

TUESDAY, Sept. 24, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Veterans who suffer from depression, anxiety, psychosis or bipolar disorder are more likely to suffer a heart attack, stroke or die from heart disease, a new study finds.

Those who have most severe mental health problems, such as schizophrenia, are at greatest risk.

Although it's unclear how mental problems affect heart disease r...

U.S. Minorities' Recent Health Gains May Be Slowing

TUESDAY, Sept. 24, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- The gap in death rates between U.S. whites and minority groups has been narrowing in recent years, but a new study suggests that trend stopped between 2009 and 2012.

"After years of progress in reducing racial/ethnic mortality disparities, our study shows that progress among most racial/ethnic and age groups has stalled and/or reversed in th...

All-in-One Pill Helps Protect Heart

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 18, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Could popping just one pill a day keep your heart and blood vessels humming along for years to come?

Possibly. Researchers just tested a combo pill containing low doses of two blood pressure medications, a statin and a medication that keeps you from retaining excess fluid. They estimated that taking the polypill over a year reduced the ri...

Could Daily Low-Dose Aspirin Still Help Some People?

MONDAY, Sept. 16, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Debate over the benefits and drawbacks of daily low-dose aspirin has flared in recent years, with guidelines now generally urging against the regimen to prevent a first heart attack or stroke in healthy people.

But some people with good heart health still might benefit from taking daily low-dose aspirin, a new study from New Zealand argues.

Heart Attack Can Be More Lethal If Symptoms Are More Gradual

THURSDAY, Sept. 12, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Heart attack patients often take longer to seek help if they have gradual symptoms, which may put them at increased risk of death, researchers say.

Gradual symptoms begin with mild discomfort that slowly worsens, while abrupt symptoms are sudden and severe pain, according to authors of a study published Sept. 12 in the European Journal o...

Occasional Naps Do a Heart Good, Swiss Study Finds

MONDAY, Sept. 9, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Could grabbing a nap once or twice a week help you live longer?

A new study reports the occasional nap appears to cut in half people's risk of heart attack, strokes and heart disease, compared with folks who never nap.

But more frequent napping provided no benefit, researchers found.

"In fact, we found that frequent nappers...

Even Small Improvements in Cholesterol, Blood Pressure Help Prevent Heart Attack

THURSDAY, Sept. 5, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Small, lasting changes in cholesterol and blood pressure levels can dramatically reduce the risk of heart disease and strokes over a lifetime, new research suggests.

The large study found that a combination of a drop in LDL cholesterol (the bad type) of 14 mg/dL and a 5 mm Hg drop in systolic blood pressure (the top number in a blood pressur...

Going Vegetarian Good for Your Heart, But May Up Stroke Risk

THURSDAY, Sept. 5, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Vegetarianism is all the rage these days, but a new study suggests that slicing meat from your diet might raise your risk of stroke slightly.

While vegetarians had a 22% lower risk for heart disease, they had a 20% higher risk for stroke, British researchers found. Meanwhile, people who ate fish but no other meats (pescatarians) had ...

Poverty Makes Heart Failure Even More Lethal, Study Shows

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A new study helps confirm a dismal reality: Poor Americans are more likely to die from heart failure than their richer counterparts.

The likely reasons? According to the researchers, higher obesity rates and associated increases in type 2 diabetes appear to be driving two-thirds of the trend.

"This study underscores the disparitie...

Hurricane Dorian Can Wreak Havoc on Heart Health

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- As Hurricane Dorian rolls up the southeastern coast of the United States, most in its path worry about having enough water, food and batteries to ride the storm out.

But the American Heart Association (AHA) warns that the high stress and trauma of such an event can also trigger heart trouble, especially among heart disease and stroke patie...

Poor Circulation in Legs? Statin Meds Can Keep You Living Longer

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Folks with peripheral artery disease (PAD) have a much lower risk of death if they take cholesterol-lowering statins as directed by their doctor, a new study reports.

About 200 million people worldwide suffer from PAD, a condition in which arteries feeding blood to the legs become clogged, researchers explained.

However, patients who ...

Weight-Loss Surgery Drops Heart Disease, Death Risk for Diabetics

TUESDAY, Sept. 3, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- For people who are obese and have type 2 diabetes, weight-loss surgery leads to more than a slimmer figure.

It also reduces the risk of heart complications and premature death by about 40% compared to standard medical care, new research says.

The Cleveland Clinic researchers compared the impact of various types of weight-loss (ba...

Cancer Overtakes Heart Disease as #1 Killer of Middle-Aged in Wealthy Nations

TUESDAY, Sept. 3, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Heart disease still claims the lives of more people globally, but in more affluent nations it has now ceded its place as the leading killer to cancer, a major new report finds.

Around the world, 40% of all deaths are caused by heart disease, making it the number one global killer. That means that of the estimated 55 million people who die...

Could You Be Having a Heart Attack?

TUESDAY, Sept. 3, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- We tend to think of heart attacks as they're shown in movies, as massive, chest-crushing events, typically affecting older men. But that's not the only case, far from it.

Research published in the Journal of the American Heart Association found that, even though women get heart attacks less often than men, they have a higher percentag...

After Heart Attack, Stenting More Than the Blocked Artery May Be Best

SUNDAY, Sept. 1, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Opening all of a person's clogged arteries after a heart attack can protect their health better than reopening only the one that caused it, a major international clinical trial has concluded.

Opening all blockages and not just the "culprit" behind the attack reduces a patient's risk of dying or having another heart ...

Long-Term 'Couch Potatoes' May Face Double the Odds for Early Death

SATURDAY, Aug. 31, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Decades spent on couches, chairs and otherwise not exercising could mean much shorter lives, new research shows.

A Norwegian team who tracked health outcomes for more than 23,000 adults over 20 years found that those who were inactive over that time had twice the risk of a premature death, compared to those who we...

Rising Obesity Rates Undermining Strides Made Against Heart Disease

TUESDAY, Aug. 27, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Rising obesity rates, coupled with an associated jump in diabetes and high blood pressure cases, appears to be undoing decades of gains made against heart disease, a new study finds.

After 2010, the rate of deaths from heart disease continued to drop, but more slowly. Deaths from stroke leveled off, and deaths from high blood pressure ("hyper...

Wintertime Smog Tied to Rise in Heart Procedures

FRIDAY, Aug. 23, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Breathing in smoggy air, especially in the colder months, may be especially taxing for the heart, new research out of Europe suggests.

Polish researchers found that high levels of air pollution were tied to spikes in procedures to open blocked heart arteries. This was especially apparent in winter, when pollution levels were highest, a new stu...

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