In an ironic twist, the president of the Amercian Heart Association, Dr. John Warner, suffered a heart attack in the middle of a health conference at the age of 52.
Dr. Warner’s speech at the conference focused on how his family’s history of heart disease has impacted his family, citing his father and his father’s father heart bypass surgery while in their 60s, While Dr. Warner’s is recovering after doctors cleared a clogged artery, the fact remains that the head of an organization dedicated to living lives free of cardiovascular disease or stroke had a heart attack more than a decade earlier than the age of the average man’s first heart attack. It’s like finding out the vegan restaurant you love is run by a guy who competes in whole hog barbeque contests on the weekends. Does the AHA treat cardiovascular disease or simply manage it?
One in four deaths in the U.S. is from cardiovascular disease. The CDC identifies high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and smoking as key factors in developing it. But simply addressing these misses the bigger picture – high blood pressure and high cholesterol are symptoms. They don’t exist in a vacuum. In fact, many of the causes of crucial heart disease risk factors are the same: diet and exercise.
AHA diet recommendations are perfectly pleasant, but they don’t address critical factors in an actual healthy diet. They vilify salt without explicitly acknowledging that the problem is actually the processed food. The association’s first-ever guidelines for added sugars were introduced in 2016, years behind emerging dietary research. let’s not get into their complicated an incredibly damaging relationship with fats, including the AHA’s recent denouncement of coconut oil. The AHA doesn’t actually fix the diet, much like it only fixes symptoms.
Recommended: Start Eating Like That and Start Eating Like This – Your Guide to Homeostasis Through Diet
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A Non-Profit, Emphasis on the Profit
The AHA has a laundry list of powerful friends in industries that would are very interested in controlling the heart disease narrative – especially pharmaceutical companies. Many well known pharmaceutical companies have contributed millions to the AHA. Some of the best-selling drugs in the country, statins and medications to lower blood pressure, are the AHA’s solution of choice for treating heart disease. The AHA provides a steady stream of customers, and one could argue that the recent drop in healthy blood pressure guidelines that added 30 million Americans to the potential sales…patient pool.
- Heart attack strikes American Heart Association president – CNN
- AHA president doing well after minor heart attack – American Heart Association News
- Heart Disease Facts – CDC.gov
- Nearly half of U.S. adults have high blood pressure under new guidelines – CBS
- The American Heart Association — Protecting Industry Not Patients – Huffington Post