Friday, February 14, 2014

Heart Disease A Little History Lesson

Since we are celebrating American Heart Month now is a great time for a little history lesson on heart disease. You might be surprised to know before 1900, very few people died of heart disease. According to The Franklin Institute the rate of heart disease increased so sharply between the 1940 and 1967 that the World Health Organization called it the world's most serious epidemic.

In 1948, a 30+ years study began in Framingham, Massachusetts which continues today. This study is known as the Framingham Study, which is the investigation that involved over 5,000 people aged 30 to 62 who showed no signs of heart disease at the beginning of the study. Every two years, the participants go a complete physical examination. The Study lasted over thirty years and provided most of the information on predicting heart disease development we know today.

Today thanks to unhealthy lifestyle habits such as smoking, freezer, box and restaurant foods plus hanging out on the couch in front of the TV then stressing about it heart disease is the #1 killer in the U.S. The good news is you can do something about it. In fact your longevity and vitality depend only on you. No doctor, medication or hospital can prevent heart disease only you can with the choices you make each and every day. 
While you are working on changing those unhealthy decisions knowing the warning signs and symptoms of a heart attack is key to preventing death. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say many people don’t know the signs.
  • In a 2005 survey, most respondents—92%—recognized chest pain as a symptom of a heart attack. Only 27% were aware of all major symptoms and knew to call 9-1-1 when someone was having a heart attack.
  • About 47% of sudden cardiac deaths occur outside a hospital. This suggests that many people with heart disease don't act on early warning signs.
To move you into the 27% who know what the major symptoms of a heart attack are here is a quick video to get yourself up to speed. Share this blog with your friends and together we can not only make a difference we can save a life... maybe someone you love.

 Your partner in health,

Cindy Cohen RN, BS BA
Certified Health Coach
Wellness Consultant
C2 Your Health LLC
Health-e 4 Life Worksite Wellness

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Reduce Sugar to Reduce Disease

Does it surprise you to know the medical and alternative therapy practitioners have known for a long time sugar promotes a long laundry list of chronic diseases? Now cardiovascular disease is added to this list.

Looks like sugar research is back in the news. This is not the first time. In 2003 the World Health Organization (WHO) published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ) recommending  “added sugar” be limited to 10% of a person's caloric intake. Joining the CMAJ was the report  Joint WHO/FAO Expert Consultation on Diet, Nutrition and the Prevention of Chronic Diseases  who said the report  is scientifically valid and that its 10% limit is virtually the same as the recommendation in the US Food Guide

Does it surprise you to know the CMAJ article was titled Sugar industry sour on WHO report  which stated the US Sugar Association wants Congress to reconsider its funding of the World Health Organization? In 2003 National Public Radio (NPR) reported the US Sugar Association who provides funding to the WHO  will pull their funding if the recommendation is changed.

Fast forward to this week 2014.

USA Today reported the new research published in JAMA this week stated "The risk of cardiovascular disease death increases exponentially as you increase your consumption of added sugar," says the study's lead author, Quanhe Yang, a senior scientist with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This is a landmark study because it is the first study using a nationally representative sample to look at the total amount of added sugar and the association to cardiovascular disease death.

This time the American Beverage Association weights in with this statement: "This is an observational study which cannot and does not show that cardiovascular disease is caused by drinking sugar-sweetened beverages." Really?

Good news. It looks like the WHO will not be bully-ed any longer. They are considering changing their recommendation to the 10% consumption. We'll see. 

In the meantime, the message is pretty clear to reduce your risk of dieing of a heart attack slow down on those tasty deserts, and all those added sugars. Now you know what can you do to reduce your sugar consumption take baby steps. It won't be easy. Start with this article published in the Huffington Post for guidance 10 Easy Ways to Reduce Your Sugar Consumption

Your partner in heath,

Cindy Cohen RN, BS BA
Certified Health Coach
Wellness Consultant