Are open fires and wood-burners bad for your health?

April 21, 2020

Source: British Heart Foundation

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 Date of publication:  April 2020

 Publication type: News

In a nutshell:   There are few who don’t enjoy warming up by a fire in winter or sitting around a fire pit outside in the summer. In fact, these are such popular activities that around one in 10 British homes feature an open fire or a wood-burning stove – a total of 2.7million residences.

Yet few people know that for every minute we spend warming ourselves by the fire, tiny toxic air pollution particles known as PM2.5 are being released into the air, causing harm to our health.

This is one of the most harmful forms of air pollution. In fact, our research has shown that PM2.5 can enter our bloodstream and increase our risk of a heart attack or stroke.

Length of publication:  1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library. https://www.hlisd.org/

Acknowledgement:   British Heart Foundation


Health matters: physical activity – prevention and management of long-term conditions

March 5, 2020

Source: British association for cardiovascular prevention and rehabilitation

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Date of publication:  04 Feb 2020

Publication type: Guidance

In a nutshell:  One in 3 adults in England live with a long-term health condition and they are twice as likely to be amongst the least physically active. However, evidence shows that regular physical activity can help prevent or manage many common conditions such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and some cancers. It also helps keep symptoms under control, prevent additional conditions from developing, and reduce inequalities.

Length of publication:  1 webpage

Acknowledgement:  British association for cardiovascular prevention and rehabilitation


Good sleep linked to lower risk of heart attack and stroke

March 5, 2020

Source: NHS Behind the headlines  

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Date of publication:  19 December 2019 (lower case)

Publication type:  news item

In a nutshell:  Restful night ‘cuts risk’ of heart attack

Length of publication:  1 webpage

Acknowledgement:    NHS Behind the headlines


Loneliness may increase death risk in people with heart conditions

November 19, 2019

Source: NHS –Behind the Headlines

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Date of publication: November 2019

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: “Lonely heart patients at ‘increased risk of dying’ after leaving hospital,” reports The Independent. A survey of people with heart diseases discharged from hospitals in Denmark found that those who said they felt lonely were more likely to report feeling depressed and anxious, report a lower quality of life and were almost 3 times more likely to have died within a year of being discharged. Loneliness is not the same as living alone, however. People in the study who said they lived alone were less likely to experience anxiety, and no more likely to have died than people who lived with others. The survey adds to evidence from previous studies drawing a link between loneliness, social isolation and poor outcomes for people with heart disease. The researchers say doctors should consider loneliness as part of their clinical risk assessment when treating heart patients.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.

Acknowledgement:   NHS –Behind the Headlines


Children become less active each year of primary school

November 19, 2019

Source: British Heart Foundation

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Date of publication: November 2019

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: A new study shows that by age 11, children are doing more than an hour less of physical activity a week than at age 6.   The study revealed a dramatic drop in children’s physical activity levels by the time they finish primary school. Monitoring the behaviour of more than 2,000 children from 57 schools across South West England during primary school, it found children became 17 minutes less active per week every year. The UK Chief Medical Officers recommend that children do an hour of MVPA every day. This study found that 61 per cent of children in Year 1 did at least an hour of MVPA per day, but by Year 6, only 41 per cent achieved the target. The drop was particularly steep for girls, who fell from 54 to 28 per cent by the time they finished primary school.  

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.

Acknowledgement:   British Heart Foundation


Marijuana may be risky for those with heart disease

February 28, 2019

Source: Medical News Today

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Date of publication: February 2019

Publication type: Case Study

In a nutshell: Although marijuana may have some benefits, its use could cause health issues for older people with cardiovascular disease. One case, in particular, is sparking some questions.   A Canadian Journal of Cardiology case report examined a 70-year-old man who had a heart attack after eating a lollipop that was infused with 90 milligrams (mg) of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) — which is largely responsible for marijuana’s psychological effects.

The man lived with stable coronary artery disease, and he was taking cardiac medication. He ate most of the lollipop and did so to help minimize pain and improve sleep.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.

Acknowledgement:   Medical News Today


Regular exercise may be more beneficial for men than post-menopausal women

July 20, 2018

Source: British Heart Foundation

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Date of publication: June 2018

Publication type: Research

In a nutshell: Researchers at Loughborough University examined the effects of regular exercise training on the blood vessels of 12 men and post-menopausal women. Blood pressure and arterial stiffness were assessed before and one hour after a brisk walk.

Their preliminary findings suggest that arterial stiffness, an independent risk factor for heart disease, is higher in women compared with age-matched men. A single bout of brisk walking improved arterial stiffness and blood pressure in both groups, however, arterial stiffness remained higher in women. Interestingly, the improvements in arterial stiffness were related to changes in blood pressure in men only, suggesting possible sex-differences in how the blood vessels adapt and respond to exercise.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.

Acknowledgement: British Heart Foundation


What are the best foods for heart health?

June 15, 2018

Source: Medical News Today

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Date of publication: May 2018

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warn that eating foods high in fat, cholesterol, or sodium can be very bad for the heart. So, when taking steps to minimize the risk of heart disease, diet is a good place to start. In this article, we examine some of the best foods for ensuring that you keep a robust and healthy heart.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

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Acknowledgement: Medical News Today


These five habits will lengthen your lifespan

June 15, 2018

Source: Medical News Today

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Date of publication: May 2018

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: Exercising regularly, adopting a healthful diet, not smoking, not becoming overweight, and drinking only moderate amounts of alcohol could all lengthen life at age 50 for women by 14 years and for men by 12 years. This was the conclusion of the first study to thoroughly analyse the relationship between “low-risk lifestyle factors” and life expectancy in the United States.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.

Acknowledgement: Medical News Today


‘Apple-shaped’ women may have increased heart attack risk

April 27, 2018

Source: NHS Choices: Behind the Headlines

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Date of publication: March 2018

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: “Women with apple-shaped bodies are ‘more likely to suffer heart attacks than those who are pear-shaped’,” the Daily Mirror reports, as a new study found a link between increased waist size and heart attack.

Researchers from the University of Oxford and other institutions investigated the links between having increased levels of body fat and the risk of having a heart attack.

They used data from people enrolled in the UK Biobank study, which asked nearly 500,000 adults between the ages of 40 and 69 about their health.

The study found having a bigger waist and having a bigger waist relative to your hips were linked to an increased risk of having a heart attack.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.

Acknowledgement: NHS Choices: Behind the Headlines


Seven ways … to lower your heart age

February 22, 2018

Source: The Guardian

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Date of publication: January 2018

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: Article about how you can lower your risk of heart attack or stroke, at any age.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

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Acknowledgement: The Guardian


Middle-aged can reverse heart risk with exercise, study suggests

February 22, 2018

Source: BBC Health News

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Date of publication: January 2018

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: The study, published in the journal Circulation, analysed the hearts of 53 adults aged 45-64 who were healthy but had no history of exercising regularly.

Research has shown that sedentary behaviours – such as sitting or reclining for long periods of time – increase the risk of heart disease.

The study’s participants were divided into two groups, with one following an aerobic exercise routine that progressed in intensity over the two years and another doing yoga, balance training and weight training three times a week, also for two years.

The aerobic exercise group showed an 18% improvement in their maximum oxygen intake during exercise and a more than 25% improvement in “plasticity” in the left ventricular muscle of the heart – both markers of a healthier heart.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

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Acknowledgement: BBC Health News