Monday August 20, 2018

Plant-Based Food May Boost Your Heart Health

Adherence to the diet can be challenging for some patients, but many find that incorporating just a few more plant-based foods offers noticeable benefits

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They found that specific risk factors varied from about a 2 per cent reduction (for blood pressure) to a 32 per cent reduction (for inflammation).
They found that specific risk factors varied from about a 2 per cent reduction (for blood pressure) to a 32 per cent reduction (for inflammation). Pixabay
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Consuming a plant-based diet that includes nuts, soy, pulses, beans, peas and a little amount of plant sterolsa may reduce many risk factors for cardiovascular disease including blood pressure, triglycerides and inflammation, a new study has found.

According to the researchers, the plant-based dietary pattern is known as portfolio diet and it is based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

In addition to reducing low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (bad cholesterol) by about 30 per cent when combined with a low-saturated fat diet — a level comparable to medications, the researchers found the diet limited other factors for an estimated 13 per cent reduction in the overall risk for coronary heart disease, which includes angina and heart attack.

“We have known the portfolio diet lowers LDL cholesterol, but we didn’t have a clear picture of what else it could do,” said co-author John Sievenpiper, Associate Professor at the University of Toronto in Canada.

“This study allows for greater clarity and certainty about the effects of the diet and its health potential,” Sievenpiper added.

According to the researchers, the plant-based dietary pattern is known as portfolio diet and it is based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
According to the researchers, the plant-based dietary pattern is known as portfolio diet and it is based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Pixabay

For the study, published in the journal Progress in Cardiovascular Diseases, the researchers conducted a meta-analysis that combined results from seven controlled trials involving more than 400 patients.

They found that specific risk factors varied from about a 2 per cent reduction (for blood pressure) to a 32 per cent reduction (for inflammation).

Also Read: Heart Attack Risk on The Rise for Pregnant Women and Death Rate Remains High

The researchers said that dietary and lifestyle modifications can enable patients to manage high cholesterol and cardiovascular risk, and the current study provides further rationale for that approach.

Adherence to the diet can be challenging for some patients, but many find that incorporating just a few more plant-based foods offers noticeable benefits, the researchers noted. (IANS)

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Study: Sleeping For 7 Hours to Keep Your Heart Younger

Sleep duration coupled with excess heart age may prove helpful for communicating the cardiovascular risks and benefits associated with sleep duration

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research indicates sleep might play an important role in the ability to regulate negative emotions in people who suffer from anxiety or depression
The research indicates sleep might play an important role in the ability to regulate negative emotions in people who suffer from anxiety or depression. Pixabay

Sleeping for seven hours a day may reduce the age of your heart as well as decrease the risks for cardiovascular disease, say researchers.

The study showed that excess heart age is the lowest in adults who sleep seven hours a night.

Sleeping times less than or greater than seven hours were associated with increased excess heart age, while short sleepers had the highest elevations in excess heart age.

Sleep duration coupled with excess heart age may prove helpful for communicating the cardiovascular risks and benefits associated with sleep duration.

“These results are important because they demonstrate a quantitative method for the inclusion of sleep duration in the establishment and communication of cardiovascular risk for individuals,” said Julia Durmer from the Emory University in Georgia, US.

The study, published in the journal Sleep, included data from 12,775 adults aged between 30-74 years.

Representational image.
Representational image. Pixabay

They self reported their sleep duration which was classified into five categories — five hours or less, six, seven, eight, nine and/or more hours of sleep.

The team used sex-specific Framingham heart age algorithm to calculate each individual’s heart age and used multivariable linear or logistic regression to examine the association between sleep duration and excess heart age.

The results showed that mean adjusted excess heart age was lowest among adults who reported sleeping seven hours per 24-hour period.

Also Read: Healthy Sleep Key to Ward off Depression Later

“This could have utility in the clinical care of patients with cardiovascular risk, and for public health researchers interested in adding a sleep metric to future studies,” Durmer said.

According to the US-based National Sleep Foundation, people who do not sleep enough are at higher risk for cardiovascular disease and coronary heart disease-regardless of age, weight, smoking and exercise habits.

Sleeping too little causes disruptions in underlying health conditions and biological processes like glucose metabolism, blood pressure and inflammation. However, the same may hold true for over sleeping. (IANS)