My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

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Nobody
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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby Nobody » Tue Dec 20, 2016 11:25 pm

Cowcorner wrote:I have some lifestyle issues that I need to address (specifically diet and stress), but most of my situation is genetic factors - my father had his first heart attack about the age I am now.

You are proof that you can't out-ride a poor diet. Stress is secondary to diet as a risk factor. With your genetics, if you don't address the diet problem well, it probably won't be your last heart problem. Plus atherosclerosis usually affects your entire cardiovascular system. The heart is just one of the first places to get an issue. The one many get before that is not being able to "raise the flag".

A general health education problem is that we are taught that exercise is so good for us that it's almost considered a cure-all. So people tend to concentrate on that. When in reality diet is the most critical component in a healthy lifestyle.

Cowcorner wrote:The alarming thing is that I had pretty much no prior warning other than (possibly) a slight breathlessness when I walked up stairs. Certainly cycling was not an issue.

I've heard/read that in half of all cases, a heart attack is the first symptom.

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby enduro2 » Wed Dec 21, 2016 2:40 am

Though it's been 5mo this is the first time that I have seen this thread. I think it's one of the top threads of the year IMHO. Why? Not just for the outcome but as thought provokingpost for all of us to get regular checks and to check ourselves too - diet, warning signs etc.

My brother has had three heart attacks and I was with him for the first.

So glad you had good fortune and I bet your well past a lot of the pain and restrictions now.

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby Nobody » Wed Dec 21, 2016 12:17 pm

In addition to my previous post on the first page here, which encourages all to get their hsCRP checked as a inflammation marker. I found another study which shows the similar differentials in hsCRP from people with events to people without. Yet low differences in cholesterol readings. Table 3 from the study below.
https://www.jstage.jst.go.jp/article/ja ... 23465/_pdf

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CKinnard
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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby CKinnard » Wed Dec 21, 2016 1:47 pm

Cowcorner wrote:The moral of the story? If you experience any sort of chest discomfort or pain that doesn't feel right, don't delay and never feel embarrassed about calling an ambulance, particularly if you have any sort of family history. The doctors told my family that most people with my type of STEMI don't make it to hospital and, in my case, it's only because we called it in early that I'm still here.

Now looking forward to getting the second stent out of the way so I can start the recovery process in earnest.

Merry Christmas all. Stay safe. 8)


Thanks CC. The moral of the story is very much to call 000 at the first sign of unusual symptoms.
The consequences of not doing so, and it being a heart attack, are death or stroke.

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CKinnard
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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby CKinnard » Wed Dec 21, 2016 2:02 pm

Colin, m2cw. I agree with everything Nobody has offered, and would add that if there's one book you might read, it be "How Not to Die" by Michael Greger. You don't have to go all the way with that diet but just understanding how important it is to get regular veges and fruit into you, and reduce animal produce, will help++.

I'd also suggest you google the research of Dean Ornish. His studies are the only to show that atherosclerosis can be reversed by diet and lifestyle factors.

So essentially, positive lifestyle changes for you include
- a high load of vege and fruit daily. at least 5 and 2 cups respectively.
- vegetable serves should include a 2-3 cups of dark green leafys (spinach, asian greens, etc) HOWEVER, this may be an issue depending on what blood thinners you are on. You need to discuss any dietary change with your treating doctors as it may effect your med doses.
- drop your animal flesh to less than 300 grams a week. and substitute with legumes.
- follow the advice of Greger and Ornish to go very low fat diet for at least a year.
- progressively build exercise stress load over 6 months while simultaneously cleaning up diet.
- wear a heart rate monitor for 6-8 weeks for exercise, and even synch with strava. this will provide a record of your heart rate, and warning of arrhythmia, no matter how short.
- decrease alcohol to 0-2 serves a day
- ensure regular rehydration, usually 500mls before main meals at least
adopt stress reduction strategies - regular quiet time, review sleep quality.

Obviously I don't expect you to take my word on this. Read the book if motivated, and discuss the above factors with your personal doctors and other health carers. Be wary of cardiologists or GPs unfamiliar with Dean Ornish's studies.

If you want to ask me questions, feel free to do so via PM.

All the best to you.

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby Nobody » Wed Dec 21, 2016 2:37 pm

CKinnard wrote:I'd also suggest you google the research of Dean Ornish. His studies are the only to show that atherosclerosis can be reversed by diet and lifestyle factors.

True for both lifestyle and diet, then he's the only one I know of.
Esselstyn has shown reversals with just diet in many cases.
http://dresselstyn.com/JFP_06307_Article1.pdf

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CKinnard
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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby CKinnard » Wed Dec 21, 2016 3:48 pm

Nobody wrote:
CKinnard wrote:I'd also suggest you google the research of Dean Ornish. His studies are the only to show that atherosclerosis can be reversed by diet and lifestyle factors.

True for both lifestyle and diet, then he's the only one I know of.
Esselstyn has shown reversals with just diet in many cases.
http://dresselstyn.com/JFP_06307_Article1.pdf


Cool. Ornish and Esselstyn are mates. I knew Esselstyn had done similar studies, but hadn't seen this study.
Maybe I should have said Ornish was FIRST to show nutrition and other lifestyle factors reversed coronary artery blockages, with coronary angiography.

One of Ornish's earlier papers which is now 26 years old....and the findings are still largely not known by GPs.
http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lance ... 40-6736(90)91656-U/abstract?cc=y=

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby cyclotaur » Wed Dec 21, 2016 4:40 pm

CKinnard wrote:Maybe I should have said Ornish was FIRST to show nutrition and other lifestyle factors reversed coronary artery blockages, with coronary angiography.

One of Ornish's earlier papers which is now 26 years old....and the findings are still largely not known by GPs.
http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lance ... 40-6736(90)91656-U/abstract?cc=y=
.
I read two books in about 1980-81 (I think) on the Pritikin diet which have greatly influenced our dietary choices for the past 35 years. Pritikin claimed exactly the same thing, that diet and lifestyle could reverse coronary artery disease, diabetes etc, claims which were largely ignored by the medical establishment at that time.

The diets were fairly spartan for those days, and had some critics, but basically tie in with many later studies of the type mentioned above.
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CKinnard
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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby CKinnard » Wed Dec 21, 2016 5:18 pm

cyclotaur wrote:I read two books in about 1980-81 (I think) on the Pritikin diet which have greatly influenced our dietary choices for the past 35 years. Pritikin claimed exactly the same thing, that diet and lifestyle could reverse coronary artery disease, diabetes etc, claims which were largely ignored by the medical establishment at that time.

The diets were fairly spartan for those days, and had some critics, but basically tie in with many later studies of the type mentioned above.


Yep, while my 18yo mates were out getting smashed every weekend, I gave it up after 4 months. I was still nationally competitive in a lightweight 4 (rowing), and started looking for an edge nutrition wise. I also ran a bit, and runner's world magazine was where I first read about Nathan Pritikin. I adopted his diet from that day. I lost a little bit of strength squats, bench press, and bent over row; but my endurance exploded and I felt a lot calmer inside. Nathan's work was inspiration for Dean Ornish, as was his exploration of Eastern philosophy. Those 18yo mates of mine are essentially crippled up with arthritis 40 years later.

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby Nobody » Wed Dec 21, 2016 11:06 pm

CKinnard wrote:One of Ornish's earlier papers which is now 26 years old....and the findings are still largely not known by GPs.
http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lance ... 40-6736(90)91656-U/abstract?cc=y=

Thanks, but the link didn't work.
http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PII0140-6736(90)91656-U/abstract

Even if GPs did know about it. Would they act on something that would affect their future income if the patient did listen and affect the doctor's relationship with patients if they took offence? Strong chance of loss for GPs either way IMO. Can't see them being too eager.

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby ColinOldnCranky » Thu Dec 22, 2016 9:09 pm

Cowcorner wrote:
The moral of the story? If you experience any sort of chest discomfort or pain that doesn't feel right, don't delay and never feel embarrassed about calling an ambulance, particularly if you have any sort of family history. The doctors told my family that most people with my type of STEMI don't make it to hospital and, in my case, it's only because we called it in early that I'm still here.

But also be aware that your heart can misbehave without any warning sign at all. I was down and out within twenty metres of being seen in no distress whatsoever. And at 64 I am not the one to ignore any of the classic signs.

One also does not have to have a seriously high cholesterol level it appears. My levels on admittance were nothing to be alarmed about but I am now told that I am predisposed to suffer cholesterol on my arteries at lower than average levels.

And ALL Other indicators put me at no risk. My weight on that week was around 79kg, about a kg more than my absolute minimum. I saw my GP yesterday and, as usual, he waxed lyrical about my BP. My heart rate is so low that a couple of weeks ago, having my pulse checked half a dozen times by machine (as part of an unrelated medical study) and after each of those measures was taken alarms to go off. What for? As an alert to the technician that my pulse is outside of expected limits.

It's hard to know what more an individual can do other than be sensible and stay fit. (Though I am counting my eggs now :lol: ) Just know that even covering all bases it can happen.

Maybe the best we can do is keep up with basic first aid training. 7% survival rate were the odds for what I experienced.
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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby Nobody » Thu Dec 22, 2016 10:47 pm

ColinOldnCranky wrote:One also does not have to have a seriously high cholesterol level it appears. My levels on admittance were nothing to be alarmed about but I am now told that I am predisposed to suffer cholesterol on my arteries at lower than average levels.

As per the two studies I've already posted in this thread, you are correct. Cholesterol is relative to the person's norm rather something that can easily be compared between people. People have different set points.
For example, my total cholesterol used to be 6.5 mmol/L. Now it's 3.7. That's still high for some people and may be higher than yours. But since my hsCRP is 0.4 (lowest risk range) and I'm on a diet that should halt or even reverse atheroclerosis, I should have little to worry about.

ColinOldnCranky wrote:And ALL Other indicators put me at no risk. My weight on that week was around 79kg, about a kg more than my absolute minimum. I saw my GP yesterday and, as usual, he waxed lyrical about my BP. My heart rate is so low that a couple of weeks ago, having my pulse checked half a dozen times by machine (as part of an unrelated medical study) and after each of those measures was taken alarms to go off. What for? As an alert to the technician that my pulse is outside of expected limits.

High BP can be an indicator of general problems, especially for stroke risk. But I also know one person with a BP so high that he requires medication, yet has a coronary artery calcification score of zero.

ColinOldnCranky wrote:It's hard to know what more an individual can do other than be sensible and stay fit. (Though I am counting my eggs now :lol: ) Just know that even covering all bases it can happen.

Well if one ignores what's already been posted, then it would be hard to know. But if you are counting eggs, then you must be aware to some degree. :)
Staying fit won't out run a poor diet if one has a genetic predisposition. I knew a guy who was supposedly very fit. He died of a massive heart attack at 33 yo, leaving a wife and small child. His father died at 41. He had the impression that being fit would help him.
Yes, problems can still happen. But I highly doubt 99% of people in AU are "covering all bases".

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby battler2 » Tue Dec 27, 2016 11:21 pm

after reading the first post in this thread i knew i wouldn't have to go far before the vegans start spurting their rubbish (one member in particular).

diet is important yes (and a really lousy diet for decades at a time will hurt you), but heart attacks are also triggered by numerous other nervous system based issues either hereditary, stress or brain related, adverse reactions to previous medications, or believe it not - excessive exercise.

the biggest issue i have with vegans doing so (and it's getting more and more prominent on youtube and on young impressionable people i meet) is their complete dismissal of benefits to eating meat, fish and dairy in a balanced diet that is lost in the focus on their own agenda.

veganism and animal rights activism should seriously be considered a mental illness because that way of thinking is really no different from what vegans claim to be fighting against.

lastly, the op should look into Kyolic Aged Garlic Extract - google it. adelaide uni did a study. might be worth a try.

and look into thoroughly researched and widely recommended fish oil supplements, oh wait, that's not vegan.

remember, there is no 'one size fits all' approach, despite what vegans want you to believe.

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby CKinnard » Wed Dec 28, 2016 12:16 pm

battler2 wrote:lastly, the op should look into Kyolic Aged Garlic Extract - google it. adelaide uni did a study. might be worth a try.


Too many barbecued pork ribs and buckets of lard for Chrissy Battler? Never mind. None of us get out of here alive.

Meanwhile, why "should" the op look at Kyolic Aged Garlic Extract?
Col's GP says his BP is apparently brilliant.
And your fix all garlic recommendation is considered a safe adjunct treatment to conventional antihypertensive therapy for.....hypertension!

Thanks for being a great advert for eating less animals!

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby warthog1 » Wed Dec 28, 2016 1:50 pm

battler2 wrote:after reading the first post in this thread i knew i wouldn't have to go far before the vegans start spurting their rubbish (one member in particular).

diet is important yes (and a really lousy diet for decades at a time will hurt you), but heart attacks are also triggered by numerous other nervous system based issues either hereditary, stress or brain related, adverse reactions to previous medications, or believe it not - excessive exercise.

the biggest issue i have with vegans doing so (and it's getting more and more prominent on youtube and on young impressionable people i meet) is their complete dismissal of benefits to eating meat, fish and dairy in a balanced diet that is lost in the focus on their own agenda.

veganism and animal rights activism should seriously be considered a mental illness because that way of thinking is really no different from what vegans claim to be fighting against.

lastly, the op should look into Kyolic Aged Garlic Extract - google it. adelaide uni did a study. might be worth a try.

and look into thoroughly researched and widely recommended fish oil supplements, oh wait, that's not vegan.

remember, there is no 'one size fits all' approach, despite what vegans want you to believe.


Apart from expressing a dislike of vegans what is it you are trying to say here?
What is your evidence supportingthe consumption of meat and dairy?
Cows milk btw is the baby food of another species that grows to be 700+ kg. It seems counterintuitive adult humans who have ceased growing should consume it.

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby cyclotaur » Wed Dec 28, 2016 2:01 pm

warthog1 wrote:Apart from expressing a dislike of vegans what is it you are trying to say here?
..
Good question. Leaving aside everything (including, and especially, personal opinions and preferences) I reckon it comes down to ...
battler2 wrote:...remember, there is no 'one size fits all' approach...
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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby warthog1 » Wed Dec 28, 2016 2:11 pm

Which is not really saying anything.
There are foods that there is significant evidence suggesting they contribute to atherosclerosis. Meat and Dairy are 2 of them. It would stand to reason therefore, that you aim to minimise consumption of them.
If you are going to suggest otherwise surely it would be reasonable to expect some evidence supporting said stance?

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby Nobody » Wed Dec 28, 2016 5:29 pm

battler2 wrote:the biggest issue i have with vegans doing so (and it's getting more and more prominent on youtube and on young impressionable people i meet) is their complete dismissal of benefits to eating meat, fish and dairy in a balanced diet that is lost in the focus on their own agenda.

Whatever those benefits are need to be realistically weighed up against the health detriment of eating them over the long term. Without knowing the liabilities, at least some (if not most) are going to have lower health and/or life spans. Yes the results vary from person to person. But unfortunately in many cases, the results are often not known until the damage has already been done.
Once aware, most have the choice of "eat to live", or "live to eat". Without awareness of the problem, there is no choice.

What is a balanced diet? I would have thought a diet that can give the individual all the nutrient requirements, while maintain a healthy weight and not giving one any diet associated illnesses. If one was to place the average AU diet into an online nutrient assessment calculator like Cronometer, the results would likely point to a number of nutrient deficiencies. Also, the average person in AU has a BMI of 27. The "normal weight" range finishes at 25.

battler2 wrote:veganism and animal rights activism should seriously be considered a mental illness because that way of thinking is really no different from what vegans claim to be fighting against.

I don't know how animal rights has come into this, since there is no mention in this thread about it to my knowledge and it's not the point. Just because avoiding animal products isn't mainstream doesn't make it a mental illness. And since chronic illnesses are mainstream by middle age, I'm OK with not being mainstream.
Last edited by Nobody on Wed Dec 28, 2016 5:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby battler2 » Wed Dec 28, 2016 5:30 pm

like i said, this is the problem with vegans, they constantly ask for evidence to refute what they are claiming (one diet based on their ethical beliefs or selective research) as being the magic bullet to preventing/reversing ischemic heart disease (or cancer) when they are just simply so many factors.

counter intuitive to drink milk? please. you're welcome to live in the stone age with a very basic narrow minded line of thought "because we weren't meant to"

go fully raw vegan, eating NO cooked food and live in the jungle. let me know by carrier pigeon how that works out for you.

cant tell you how many vegans i've seen get sick and revert to eating meat again. even the vegan youtubers are dropping like flies and using their imagination to justify their illness. it's quite hilarious.

an example of what happens.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/mor ... 5495e3c65d

as for the Kyolic Aged Garlic Extract, you should probably read more than one study before you comment. it's not just about blood pressure.

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby warthog1 » Wed Dec 28, 2016 5:44 pm

battler2 wrote:
counter intuitive to drink milk? please. you're welcome to live in the stone age with a very basic narrow minded line of thought "because we weren't meant to"



So it makes perfect sense to you to eat the baby food of another species? Cattle themselves don't drink it past 11-12 months of age why should we?
Drinking human breast milk would make more sense but we don't do that as adults.

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby Nobody » Wed Dec 28, 2016 5:50 pm

battler2 wrote:cant tell you how many vegans i've seen get sick and revert to eating meat again. even the vegan youtubers are dropping like flies and using their imagination to justify their illness. it's quite hilarious.

an example of what happens.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/mor ... 5495e3c65d

The last two paragraphs from the link above.
As Slate’s parenting advice columnist put it: “Can kids be vegan and be healthy? Of course they can. Fruits, vegetables, and whole grains are undoubtedly good for growing bodies, and research even suggests an association between veganism and a reduced risk for cancer.”

But there’s a caveat: Veganism requires a lot of extra work. Parents and caregivers, the Slate columnist writes, “have to ensure that their children are getting the calories and wide variety of nutrients they need — not a small feat when dealing with typically fussy, food-neophobic kids.”

Yes, it's more difficult and takes more planning to get right IMO. That's why it's good to be well informed before changing.
Raw vegan is generally a mistake for most people long term. Very difficult to get the right match for the individual.

Unfortunately with out groups like cycling, people in "in groups" like car drivers grab a small number of negative examples and then apply it to the whole group. So just like all cyclists run red lights, so all vegans are unhealthy.

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby cyclotaur » Wed Dec 28, 2016 6:07 pm

warthog1 wrote:Which is not really saying anything.
There are foods that there is significant evidence suggesting they contribute to atherosclerosis. Meat and Dairy are 2 of them. It would stand to reason therefore, that you aim to minimise consumption of them.
If you are going to suggest otherwise surely it would be reasonable to expect some evidence supporting said stance?

Of course, but everyone can find 'evidence' for a position on diet/health. There are endless threads and post about this or that approach.

My opinion (opinion only....) is that it is likely that genetics play a far greater role than is well understood, hence an otherwise healthy and fit individual with reasonable, moderate habits, can still be a contender for a heart attack. Or cancer. Or depression. Etc.

There is a lot of truth to the idea that you can't out run (or ride) a bad diet. I think there is also some truth to the notion that you can't totally overcome genetics with diet. But I reckon you can limit your personal risk factors if you understand what they are. Family history is very important. know your family's health history, know your genetic predispositions and adapt your diet and lifestyle to minimise your risks and maximise your health and longevity.

Hence I agree with the 'no one size fits all' solution comment, and I think it's about all you can realistically take from battler2's post.
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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby Nobody » Wed Dec 28, 2016 6:56 pm

cyclotaur wrote:Family history is very important. know your family's health history, know your genetic predispositions and adapt your diet and lifestyle to minimise your risks and maximise your health and longevity.

I have Meniere's disease and hemochromatosis. My mother died from leukemia last year and my father was found unconscious in a car park after having a stroke earlier this year. I'm the only wage earner that needs to support a family of 4. Trying to be a responsible father means I have little choice but to have the best diet I know of and get regular exercise. As you'd expect, I take it all pretty seriously.

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby baabaa » Wed Dec 28, 2016 9:46 pm

Well, this has turned into a really weird discussion.
As for this stuff..cant tell you how many vegans i've seen get sick and revert to eating meat again. even the vegan youtubers are dropping like flies and using their imagination to justify their illness. it's quite hilarious.
May I suggest you have a look around some of the data on the lifespan of the Jains of India, they have been vegan for generations and still outlive most other groups in India even with the vast improvement in health and medicine across the country. (But I do note they tend to live in better states like Gujarat which is primarily vegetarian and has alcohol prohibition)
I cant understand how you can see eating less meat and milk products as a bad thing? I deal with farmers in animal production across Australia and lots are doing just this. Many are also the softest spoken but strongest advocates of good animal welfare and are looking to do what they can to get production closer to consumption even if they sell fewer animals. This is really what being a vegan is for many city dwellers, a push back from the factory farm to big supermarket chain food systems and trying to know more about what you eat and its origins. Anyway vegan is just a name and with the Jains, groups of people around the world have done without meat for generations.

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Re: My heart attack - Are you as healthy as you think?

Postby warthog1 » Wed Dec 28, 2016 10:49 pm

cyclotaur wrote:Of course, but everyone can find 'evidence' for a position on diet/health. There are endless threads and post about this or that approach.

My opinion (opinion only....) is that it is likely that genetics play a far greater role than is well understood, hence an otherwise healthy and fit individual with reasonable, moderate habits, can still be a contender for a heart attack. Or cancer. Or depression. Etc.

There is a lot of truth to the idea that you can't out run (or ride) a bad diet. I think there is also some truth to the notion that you can't totally overcome genetics with diet. But I reckon you can limit your personal risk factors if you understand what they are. Family history is very important. know your family's health history, know your genetic predispositions and adapt your diet and lifestyle to minimise your risks and maximise your health and longevity.

Hence I agree with the 'no one size fits all' solution comment, and I think it's about all you can realistically take from battler2's post.


True and the argument has been had in other threads. The argument and information is also muddied by vested interests in the food industry.
We have the digestive tract of a herbivorous animal. Our closest genetic relatives are largely herbivorous and only supplement their diets with animal protein. That is as complex as it needs to be for me.
Sure there are genetic differences between us however we are remarkably similar to each other and our GI tracts are remarkably similar to that of the great apes.
Some are more predisposed to coronary artery disease though, true.
I dont think if you are less predisposed it gives the green light to chow down on t-bone steak and salami daily.

Having said that it gives me a guide of what to aim for and that is where I am at the moment. I dont necessarily eat that well all the time.
Enjoying a recovery ale as I type this :)

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