Health Advice



One more reason to keep your heart healthy

By Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. on

Bobby Orr, the great NHL defenseman, had surgery on his knees more than a dozen times. Although docs could repair his aching joints, over time, his knees -- and career -- eroded even more. In his last three seasons with Chicago, he played in only 26 games.

The same kind of post-recovery hazards can plague survivors of a heart attack. These days almost 97% of people who have a heart attack and make it to the hospital survive. But -- and there's always a but -- according to a new study in American Journal of Cardiology, almost 20% of survivors develop heart failure in the next five years.

That happens because a heart attack damages your heart muscle and blood vessels, reducing the heart's ability to deliver blood, with oxygen and nutrients, to the body's cells. Folks who have advanced chronic kidney disease, diabetes, have had a second heart attack, or are African American are most at risk for heart failure after a heart attack.

If you've survived a heart attack or you are at risk for one because you smoke, have high blood pressure, elevated lousy LDL cholesterol, diabetes or obesity, drink alcohol excessively or are sedentary, listen up. You want to work with your doctor to strengthen your heart muscle. The American Heart Association recommends: quitting smoking; achieving a healthy weight; avoiding alcohol, limiting or avoiding caffeine; eating a plant-based diet; getting physical activity; managing stress; monitoring your blood pressure, getting adequate sleep; and getting an annual flu shot and the COVID-19 and pneumonia vaccines.



Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of "The Dr. Oz Show," and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer and Chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into "The Dr. Oz Show" or visit

(c)2021 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D.

Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

(c) 2021 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.



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