Lifestyle

Eating is essential for life, while lifestyle and diet are a choice. And diet and lifestyle are strongly influenced by the culture, by time and place: how much you work, what you drink or whether you smoke. Or whether you live in a flat country like The Netherlands or a hilly area like Crete. The lifestyle factors investigated in the Seven Countries Study were those that could be measured in all cohorts. Some of the lifestyle findings were a surprise.

List of findings on lifestyle and cardiovascular disease:

Major risk factors, long-term trends, coronary heart disease mortality, and European countries

Major risk factors were measured at entry and five times during 35 years. Smoking decreased over time and systolic blood pressure increased except for the East Finland cohort. A decrease of serum cholesterol occurred in Finland and in The Netherlands whereas serum cholesterol increased slightly in Italy, and large in Serbia and Greece. A comprehensive Risk Factor Change Score showed slight declines over 35 years [...]

Major risk factors, long-term trends, coronary heart disease mortality, and European countries

Physical activity, smoking, insulin, glucose tolerance and diabetes in non-diabetic Dutch men

In 1990 in the Zutphen Elderly Study habitual physical activity of leisure-time was assessed with a validated questionnaire. On average, the men spent 1.5 hours a day engaged in activities such as walking, bicycling, gardening and hobbies. In this cross-sectional survey, men in the highest quartile of weekly physical activity (>2.8 hours/day) had lower serum insulin levels compared with those who were less active. [...]

Physical activity, smoking, insulin, glucose tolerance and diabetes in non-diabetic Dutch men

Physical activity, dietary fiber and body fat

A cross-sectional analysis on survey data collected in 16 cohorts of middle-aged men in the 1960s showed that the average population index of occupational physical activity was strongly inversely related (R= -0.91) to the average population subscapular skinfold thickness, an indicator of total body fat. Average dietary fiber intake was also inversely associated ecologically, but weaker (R = -0.51), with average subscapular skinfold. Average [...]

Physical activity, dietary fiber and body fat

Physical activity, APOE4 genotype and cognitive decline

Physical activity reduces the risk of stroke and may subsequently diminish the risk of cognitive decline, but changing the level of activity is more influential than maintaining it.

Physical activity, APOE4 genotype and cognitive decline

Chlamydia pneumonia and coronary heart disease

Chronic chlamydia infection related to 3-fold higher CHD risk In the Zutphen Elderly Study a high level of antibodies to C. pneumonia was associated with an almost 3-fold higher risk of first CHD events after 5 years of follow-up. This association was independent of potential confounders. In contrast, antibodies of cytomegalovirus and Helicobactor pylori were not associated with excess CHD risk. Interpretation Chronic infections with C. pneumonia [...]

Chlamydia pneumonia and coronary heart disease

Four lifestyle factors and all-cause mortality

A healthful diet and lifestyle are related to a low all-cause mortality risk A Mediterranean style diet, a high level of physical activity, non-smoking and moderate alcohol consumption were all associated with a low 10-year risk of all-cause mortality in the European HALE project. A very low all-cause mortality risk was observed in elderly men who had four healthful diet and lifestyle factors compared [...]

Four lifestyle factors and all-cause mortality

Global coronary risk in northern and southern Europe

Large differences in global CHD risk within Europe A re-analysis of the 10-year follow-up data of the SCS published in 2000 showed large differences between northern and southern Europe in the number of hard CHD events at the same level of the major risk factors serum cholesterol, blood pressure and smoking. The number of hard CHD events was 3 times higher in northern Europe compared to [...]

Global coronary risk in northern and southern Europe

From individual risk factors to global cardiovascular risk

Individual risk factors and CHD prevention in the past In the 1960s and 70s, the Seven Countries Study and many other studies identified serum cholesterol, systolic blood pressure and smoking as major risk factors of CHD. Since then, smoking cessation and dietary interventions were promoted for primary prevention with drug treatment recommended for strongly elevated serum cholesterol and/or blood pressure levels. Identification of high-risk individuals [...]

From individual risk factors to global cardiovascular risk

Major risk factors and cardiovascular disease

High blood pressure and smoking were risk factors for three major CVDs while serum cholesterol predicted only CHD Blood pressure and cigarette smoking predicted overall cardiovascular disease mortality and each major individual cardiovascular disease: that is, coronary heart disease, other heart disease and stroke. Serum cholesterol predicted cardiovascular and coronary heart disease mortality. The association of serum cholesterol with cardiovascular mortality is due to its [...]

Major risk factors and cardiovascular disease

Four lifestyle factors combined and cardiovascular disease

A healthful diet and lifestyle is related to low CVD risk A Mediterranean style diet, a high level of physical activity, not smoking and moderate alcohol consumption were all associated with low 10-year risk of CHD and CVD in the European HALE project. A very low risk of these diseases was observed in elderly men who had four compared to those who had none [...]

Four lifestyle factors combined and cardiovascular disease