Eat "supermeals" to protect heart

December 22, 2004 in Heart Health, Nutrition Topics in the News

Eat "supermeals" to protect heart

Eating meals that include all ingredients known to improve cardiovascular health could add years to your life, according to new study findings released Friday.

According to an international group of experts' calculations, if men age 50 and older added almonds, garlic and other heart-healthy ingredients to their daily diets, they might increase their life expectancy by more than 6 years, and spend more time free of cardiovascular disease.

Among women, following the same recipe after age 50 could tack on almost 5 extra years of life, the authors report in the British Medical Journal.

They call their recommended diet the "Polymeal," playing off the "Polypill" idea, which got a lot of attention last year, of giving everyone a combination pill to prevent heart disease. The Polymeal includes ingredients that research has consistently shown can decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease. The menu includes wine, fish, dark chocolate, fruits, vegetables, garlic and almonds. All ingredients must be consumed daily in the recommended amounts, except for fish, which research suggests should be eaten four times per week.

Based on calculations using mathematical models, researchers estimate that people who combine these ingredients into Polymeals may have a 76 percent lower risk of cardiovascular problems, and spend many extra years of life with healthy hearts and blood vessels.

All research on this web site is the property of Leslie Beck Nutrition Consulting Inc. and is protected by copyright. Keep in mind that research on these matters continues daily and is subject to change. The information presented is not intended as a substitute for medical treatment. It is intended to provide ongoing support of your healthy lifestyle practices.