Wednesday December 11, 2019

Cutting Sodium Intake May Prevent 94 Million Premature Deaths From CVD

The researchers acknowledged that scaling up the three interventions would be a “huge challenge,” requiring countries to commit additional resources to boost health care capacity and quality

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The increased risk of CVD associated with OSA appears to be driven by patients in the excessively sleepy subtype, according to the researchers.
The increased risk of CVD associated with OSA appears to be driven by patients in the excessively sleepy subtype, according to the researchers. Pixabay

A worldwide effort to lower people’s blood pressure, cut sodium intake and eliminate trans fat from their diet could prevent 94 million premature deaths from cardiovascular disease (CVD) over a quarter century, says a study.

Regions expected to benefit most from the interventions include East Asia, the Pacific, and South Asia, as well as countries in sub-Saharan Africa, said the study published online in the journal Circulation.

“Focusing our resources on the combination of these three interventions can have a huge potential impact on cardiovascular health through 2040,” said lead author Goodarz Danaei, Associate Professor of Global Health at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

For the study, the researchers used global data from multiple studies and estimates from the World Health Organization in making their calculations.

They estimated that scaling up treatment of high blood pressure to 70 per cent of the world’s population could extend the lives of 39.4 million people.

Greater sodium intake is widely viewed as an intervention for preventing lightheadedness when moving from seated to standing positions. Pixabay

Cutting sodium intake by 30 per cent could stave off another 40 million deaths and could also help decrease high blood pressure, a major risk factor for CVD.

And eliminating trans fat could prevent 14.8 million early deaths.

More than half of all delayed deaths, and two-thirds of deaths delayed before 70 years, are projected to be among men, the researchers found.

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The authors said a variety of programmes and policies would be necessary to reduce premature CVD-related deaths. One important strategy would be to increase use of blood pressure medications, many of which are safe and affordable.

The researchers acknowledged that scaling up the three interventions would be a “huge challenge,” requiring countries to commit additional resources to boost health care capacity and quality. (IANS)

Next Story

AI-based System To Predict Premature Deaths

For the study, the team included over half a million people aged between 40 and 69

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Representational image.

Researchers have developed an Artificial Intelligence (AI)-based system to predict the risk of early deaths due to chronic disease in middle-aged adults.

The study, published by PLOS ONE journal, found that the new AI Machine Learning models known as “random forest” and “deep learning” were very accurate in its predictions and performed better than the current standard approach to prediction developed by human experts.

Such new risk prediction models take into account demographic, biometric, clinical and lifestyle factors for each individual, and assess even their dietary consumption of fruit, vegetables and meat per day, said Stephen Weng, Assistant Professor at the University of Nottingham in Britain.

artificial intelligence, nobel prize
“Artificial intelligence is now one of the fastest-growing areas in all of science and one of the most talked-about topics in society.” VOA

The traditionally-used “Cox regression” prediction model, based on age and gender, was found to be the least accurate at predicting mortality and also a multivariate Cox model which worked better but tended to over-predict risk.

“Preventative healthcare is a growing priority in the fight against serious diseases so we have been working for a number of years to improve the accuracy of computerised health risk assessment in the general population,” said Weng.

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For the study, the team included over half a million people aged between 40 and 69.

Although these techniques could be new to many in health research and difficult to follow, clearly reporting these methods in a transparent way could help with scientific verification and future development of AI for health care, said Joe Kai, Professor at the varsity. (IANS)