If your genes suggest risk of heart attack, is all hope lost? In other words, if heart attack runs in your family, can you reduce the odds of a heart attack occurring? According to a recent study, heredity may not be the end all be all regarding heart attacks and heart disease. This is not to say that genetics are irrelevant, but that there may be options for those in the high risk genetic category.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”) reports that 27.6 million adults are diagnosed with heart disease in the United States (“US”). That means that 11.5% of adults in the US are dealing with heart disease.
On the mortality front, the CDC’s statistics point to 614,348 deaths related to heart disease in 2014. This makes heart disease the number 1 cause of death in the US, for the same year, with 192.7 deaths per 100,000 people.
News reports suggest that living a healthy lifestyle can help combat our genes. This means that even though genes/heredity may leave a person with less protection from heart disease, some of these protections can be gained by leading a healthy lifestyle. This information comes from a study that looked at the data from more than 55,000 people.
According to the news story, the 20% of the population who are at the highest genetic risk of heart attack had a 5.1% chance of having a heart attack over 10 years if they lead a healthy lifestyle. This number was lower than people who did not lead a healthy lifestyle and were in the lowest genetic risk for heart attack for the same period of time as above.
To read more detail about the study and the news article in support of this post, click here. As always, remember to speak to your medical professional about any treatment options if you have heart related issues. In addition, do not forget to talk with your doctor before starting any exercise program.