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Several reports show that eating nuts helps to prevent death from heart attacks, so researchers from Harvard Medical School set out to find out how they help.

The researchers followed doctors in the in the United States Physicians' Health Study for 17 years. Those who ate a lot for nuts were far less likely to die of a heart attack, but eating nuts was not associated with a reduced risks of non-sudden heart attack deaths or nonfatal heart attacks. Therefore it appears that something in nuts helps to prevent death during a heart attack. They help to keep the heart from beating irregularly and ceasing to pump blood through the body. This does not mean that you should eat huge amounts of nuts. All plants contain some chemicals that help prevent disease in humans, so you should eat a varied diet that includes plenty of fruits, vegetables whole grains, beans, nuts and other seeds.

Nut consumption and decreased risk of sudden cardiac death in the Physicians' Health Study. Archives of Internal Medicine, 2002, Vol 162, Iss 12, pp 1382-1387. CM Albert, JM Gaziano, WC Willett, JE Manson. Albert CM, Brigham & Womens Hosp, Div Prevent Med, Dept Med, 900 Commonwealth Ave E, Boston,MA 02215 USA

Checked 9/3/05

May 21st, 2013
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About the Author: Gabe Mirkin, MD

Sports medicine doctor, fitness guru and long-time radio host Gabe Mirkin, M.D., brings you news and tips for your healthful lifestyle. A practicing physician for more than 50 years and a radio talk show host for 25 years, Dr. Mirkin is a graduate of Harvard University and Baylor University College of Medicine. He is board-certified in four specialties: Sports Medicine, Allergy and Immunology, Pediatrics and Pediatric Immunology. The Dr. Mirkin Show, his call-in show on fitness and health, was syndicated in more than 120 cities. Read More
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