Hereditary Heart Disease
Every time you visit your doctor, the nurse usually spends a good amount of time asking you questions about your medical family history. This is because the background information can give your physician a list of conditions that you may be at risk for, due to genetic predisposition. If my Grandfather died of a heart attack, that must be my future right? This was the old way of thinking, but the latest studies and evidence have shown that genetic destiny may be overcome.
Genes are passed from generation to generation such as eye color or skin color, but unfortunately disease susceptibility can be inherited too. Scientists of nutrigenomics have agreed that environment and lifestyle behaviors may prevent the negative expression of these genes now. A public speaker on nutrition and genetics, Roderick H. Dashwood, PhD reported that, “… we might be able to drive cancer cells the other direction. You can turn on tumor suppressor genes to silence cancer cells.” If this can be done then alterations can be used to rid your susceptibility to hereditary heart disease as well.
- Diet Pattern
- Nutrient bioavailability
- Physical Activity
- Exposure to particular chemicals and Toxins
Above are all variables that influence disease and also happen to be behaviors that we can control. Physical activity lowers your risk for obesity and type 2 diabetes significantly, which are both factors increasing risk for cardiovascular disease.
Other important gene expression influences, are the many essential vitaminsneeded for general health. B-Vitamins, such as folic acid and thiamine, contain chemicals that can help alter genes for the better. Lynn Adams, PhD, from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, explains that gene expression for health and future prevention of disease may not be possible without these vitamins.
Major nutrients recommended to prevent adult heart disease are Omega-3 fatty-acids. The eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) decrease cardiovascular risk by lowering tissue inflammation and preventing plaque build-up in blood vessels (Atherosclerosis).
Of course genes still play a part on your chances of disease, but how you choose your behavioral lifestyle and overall environment may conquer that unwanted “destiny”. Sources for Omega 3, Omega 6, and Omega 9 (Essential Fatty Acids for Heart Health):
- Fish (Cold water)
- Sunflower Oil
- Olive oil
Try looking at these articles for more information on Heart Disease