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Will eating oat bran help to prevent a heart attack?

No single food causes heart attacks and no single food prevents them. Cereals containing oats may claim that their soluble fiber lowers cholesterol, but you can also get soluble fiber from most fruits and whole grains. You will raise your cholesterol if you take in more calories than you burn, no matter how much soluble fiber you eat.

You may read that you should eat olive oil because it contains monounsaturated fats that help to prevent heart attacks, but you can also get monounsaturated fats in peanuts, nuts, sunflower seeds and many other seeds. It's your total intake of nutrients that counts. You can't prevent heart attacks just by eating oat bran, olive oil, fish oil or any other specific food. The best research on diet available today shows that if you want to prevent heart attacks and many cancers, you should eat a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans and other seeds.

January 1, 2006

May 19th, 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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