It’s tough to beat something that you are genetically predisposed to. It’s so sad to see young people who suffer from heart problems, because it runs in the family. But, if you are worried about your heart health because your mom’s or dad’s side of the family has a history of the ailment, there may be hope.
According to a new study, people who eat a Mediterranean diet, even those with a genetic predisposition for heart problems, have better heart function.
“This means that the autonomic system controlling someone’s heart rate works better in people who eat a diet similar to a Mediterranean diet,” said the study’s leader Jun Dai, MD, PhD. One’s heart rate can be analyzed for heart risk factors.
One interesting piece of evidence is that the Mediterranean diet seemed to be associated with higher heart rate variability (HRV), which is a measure of the time between a person’s heart beats. A lower variability in heart rate is a risk factor for coronary artery disease.
A Mediterranean-style diet includes fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and is low in saturated fats.