Why Is Soda Not So Sweet?

Soda may taste sweet, but when you know it raises your stroke risk by 16 percent, it begins to fall flat. You might ask: what’s really the harm in drinking soda in moderation—say, a can a day? According to Adam Bernstein, MD, DSc, of Cleveland Clinic’s Wellness Institute, even that amount—even if it’s diet soda—can … Read More

Do You Drink Soda Every Day?

Lately, soda pop has been losing some of its fizz. Concerns are building about sugary beverages and their association with obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and heart disease. These concerns have fueled heated debate in New York City. In June 2012, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg proposed a citywide ban on super-sized sodas. … Read More

Stroke and Depression — A Deadly Combination

It’s not surprising that 20 to 30 percent of people who suffer a stroke also develop depression. Because of the sudden onset of disability, they’re not able to do many of the everyday things they could do before. “It’s a traumatizing experience,” says Cleveland Clinic neurologist Irene Katzan, MD, who treats stroke patients. She says … Read More

Smokers Shave 10 Years from Life Expectancy

Most people associate cigarette smoking with breathing problems and lung cancer. But smoking is also strongly linked to cardiovascular disease. The link between smoking and cardiovascular disease Smoking is a major cause of atherosclerosis — a buildup of cholesterol, fatty cells and inflammatory deposits (called plaque) on the inner walls of the arteries that can … Read More

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Atrial Fibrillation and Your Brain

Atrial fibrillation (AF or aFib), a condition that affects your heart rhythm, does not get the same attention as other common health problems—but it should, says A. Marc Gillinov, MD, Surgical Director of Cleveland Clinic’s Center for Atrial Fibrillation and author of the book Heart 411. “Atrial fibrillation does not have the same drama of a … Read More

Stroke Prevention: (Heart) Rhythm Matters

When it comes to decreasing the risk of stroke in patients with atrial fibrillation, rhythm matters. When patients are diagnosed with atrial fibrillation (aFib), a chaotic heartbeat pattern that is caused by irregular electrical activity, typical therapies include either drugs to control the heart rhythm (antiarrhythmic drugs such as  flecainide, procainamide, amiodarone or sotalol) or rate … Read More

Tomatoes May Decrease Stroke Risk

A new Finnish study finds that eating tomatoes and tomato-based foods may lower a man’s risk of stroke. Carolyn Snyder, RD, a registered dietitian at Cleveland Clinic, says the digestive tract is built for the assimilation of whole foods, not processed foods. “With fresh fruit and vegetables like tomatoes, the body is able to use … Read More

Twitter Chat with Cardiologist Carlos Hubbard, MD

Obesity is an epidemic in America. It is linked to several risk factors for heart disease, vascular disease and stroke. These include high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Learn how you can decrease these risk factors through diet, exercise and new medications.  Carlos Hubbard, MD, will be available to answer your questions this Wednesday, Nov. … Read More

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Beta-Blockers—Still the Best? (Video)

Beta-blockers have been a go-to medication for patients with heart disease for years. But new research questions whether these drugs actually prevent future heart attack, stroke or cardiovascular death. When should beta-blockers be prescribed? And, which patients really benefit? These questions have surfaced thanks to a study released in the Journal of the American Medical … Read More

High Blood Pressure Redefined

Everybody knows high blood pressure is bad. But that doesn’t mean they know when they have high blood pressure. David Frid, MD, a cardiologist at Cleveland Clinic, says that a reading above 140/90 constitutes a diagnosis of high blood pressure. But Dr. Frid believes that someone consistently over 120/80 should also be diagnosed with high blood … Read More