Even patients who’ve already had a heart attack or who are on medications can benefit from a healthy diet, according to a new study. Canadian researchers used two healthy-eating indexes to score the diets of 31,546 patients, average age 66.5, with heart disease or diabetes who were taking drugs for their conditions. Those with the healthiest diets were 22% likely to suffer further cardiovascular problems than those with the poorest diet scores. Although many studies have demonstrated benefits of healthy eating in preventing heart disease, researchers noted, few have looked at diet and cardiovascular outcomes in those who already have health issues.
Writing in Circulation, Mahshid Dehghan, PhD, of Hamilton General Hospital, and colleagues observed, “We can infer that patients may derive an additive benefit when dietary modification is combined with proven drug therapies and other lifestyle changes.”
Source: Tufts University Health & Nutrition Letter 2014