(Daily Digest News) – According to a statement from the American College of Cardiology, simple healthy lifestyle choices, such as keeping a healthy weight and diet, exercising, not smoking and limited alcohol consumption, could prevent 80 percent of heart attacks in men.
Researchers studied 20,721 Swedish men (45-79 years of age) for 11 years. Lifestyle choices were determined through a questionnaire investigating diet, alcohol intake, smoking status, exercise and belly fat. Men in the study with the lowest risk of heart attack were non-smokers, exercised at least one hour per week, had belly fat less than 95 centimeters, drank limited amounts of alcohol and stuck to a healthy diet with frequent intake of fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, whole grains and fish.
Men who practice all of these lifestyle choices had an 86 percent lower risk of heart attack.
“It is not surprising that healthy lifestyle choices would lead to a reduction in heart attacks,” explained lead author Agneta Akesson, Ph.D., Associate Professor at the Institute of Environmental Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm. “What is surprising is how drastically the risk dropped due to these factors.”