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How holidays help the heart

Wednesday August 29th, 2018

Diet and lifestyle dominated the European Society of Cardiology's annual congress yesterday.

Researchers reported on the benefits of holidays and the relevant of dairy products at the conference in Munich, Germany.

Among the work is a study looking into the effects on the heart of dairy consumption. A team of researchers from the Medical University of Lodz, Poland, carried out a meta-analysis of 29 population studies based on self-reporting of diet.

This found no links between the consumption of dairy products and cardiovascular disease or all-cause mortality. Therefore, they state, "current guidelines to limit consumption of dairy products, especially cheese and yogurt, should be relaxed".

Another study looked at the impact of low carbohydrate diets over the long-term.

Professor Maciej Banach and colleagues, at the same Polish university, again used figures from self-reported diet. They found that low carbohydrate diets are useful in the short term to lose weight, lower blood pressure, and improve blood glucose control.

But their study suggested that in the long-term, people with a lower carbohydrate intake - particularly if non-obese and older - may be at an increased risk of death.

A further study based on 1,222 middle-aged male executives concluded that taking regular holidays could prolong life. All had least one risk factor for cardiovascular disease, and were followed for 40 years.

Analysis suggested that those who, at the start of the study, reported taking shorter holidays of three weeks or less per year had a 37% greater chance of dying than those who took more time off.

Professor Timo Strandberg, of the University of Helsinki, Finland, says: "Don't think having an otherwise healthy lifestyle will compensate for working too hard and not taking holidays. Vacations can be a good way to relieve stress."

Consumption of dairy product and its association with total and cause specific mortality - A population-based cohort study and meta-analysis, presented on Tuesday 28 August 2018

Low-carbohydrate diets and all-cause and cause-specific mortality: a population-based cohort study and pooling prospective studies, presented on Monday 27 August 2018

Increased mortality despite successful multifactorial cardiovascular risk reduction in healthy men. 40-year follow-up of the Helsinki businessmen study intervention trial, presented on Monday 27 August 2018

Tags: Diet & Food | Europe | Heart Health | Traveller Health

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