HNL Editor's Choice


Width is Depressing!

Wide Blood Cell Distribution causes depression A link has been discovered between Red Blood Cell Distribution Width (RDW) and depression.

What is RDW? Sounds complicated? It is a part of a standard complete blood count - so it's easy to check!

"Elevated red blood distribution widths are associated with anemia, but it also appears to be associated with other poor outcomes, like heart attacks, heart failure, death and now depression," said Heidi May, PhD, MSPH, the study's principal researcher.

A simple RDW test can now help doctors identify heart patients at risk of depresssion - and get strategies to help the patient sooner.

Body Mass Index (BMI) is Bad

5 BMI points increases heart risk by 23%A new study shows that even minor increases in BMI increase your chance of heart disease – regardless of exercise level, smoking status and whether or not someone has diabetes.

Body Mass Index (BMI) is a measure of obesity that was first proposed in 1835 and is now used extensively. It uses your height and weight to produce a score for obesity and, like any simplified single measure, it has some critics.

Until now, it has been considered that only the very obese have a higher risk of heart disease. This new study shows that there is no safe level of overweight - and that even minor increases of BMI increase your risks.

Financial Benefit to Heart Rehab

Financial Gains with Heart RehabilitationResearch shows it is worth investing in heart rehabilitation - as a government and as a patient.

“Not only is cardiac rehab the pillar of preventing a second cardiac event; it also makes good business sense.” says Dr. Dennis Humen, the author of a study presented at the Canadian Cardiovascular Congress. It gives a 7 per cent ROI.

With such a good investment business case,

 1. Why isn't government investing more in cardiac rehab (CR)?

 2. Why aren't more heart patients referred to CR?


No Cholesterol, Low Sugar, Low Salt, Low Cal, Hi Fibre, Antioxidant Rich, Heart Smart Healthy Popcorn!

Air popped popcorn is a heart healthy snackPopcorn is the traditional favorite at the movies. The tantalising and mesmerising smell, sight, taste - even the sound of it popping and the feel as you pick it out of the bucket - all the senses enjoy the experience of popcorn.

But did you know it is also a health food? It is - depending on how it's cooked!

It is one of the healthiest snack foods around - and there's research to back it up!

Not only that, but it is incredibly cheap to buy, easy & fun to make (even for the kids or the couch potatos), filling & tasty to eat - and even better news, is healthy for the heart and waistline.

World 1st - Worlds Smallest Heart Monitor Implanted in 5 mins

The World's Smallest Heart Monitor was implanted in 5 minutes.The world's smallest heart monitor was implanted in 5 minutes - and the patient able to go home the same day!

The miniature device can stay implanted for 3 years and is about a quater the size of its usb shaped predecessor.

When an abnormal heart rythm is detected, it automatically and wirelessly transmits the information to the patient's doctor.

The device was injected under the skin in three patients as part of a feasibility study.

It is hoped to be available in 2014 and is thought to be a fore-runner for miniature pacemakers and defibrillators.

Heart patients live longer with a positive attitude

Heart Patients Live Longer With a Positive AttitudeHeart disease patients with positive attitudes are more likely to exercise and live longer.

Researchers, who tested 600 heart patients, found that the most positive people exercised more and had a 42 percent less chance of dying for any reason.

This article reports on the research and includes additional resources to help heart patients include a positive approach in their healthy heart regime - it's really quite easy!

No Cholesterol Test Tube Eggs! Chickenless!

Cholesterol-free, animal-free, artificial test tube eggs"Test tube eggs" revolutionized human reproduction globally when, in 1978, the first IVF baby was born.

Now, the laboratory has produced a different kind of test tube egg - a no cholesterol "chickenless" chicken egg for cooking.

And they're in the supermarkets already!

These "artificial eggs" are set to revolutionise the food industry and bring back favourite foods to those watching their cholesterol.

Scrambled eggs, cakes, biscuits - they can all be made with these artificial eggs.

Evidence: What Works Better - Mechanical vs Manual Chest Compressions?

New Research and Evidence for CPR chest compressions - manual or mechanical?If someone's heart stops beating - what's the best thing to do?  Chest compressions.

But what is the best way to do it to increase the chances of survival - mechanical or manual?

New evidence presented at the European Society of Cardiology congress in Amsterdam provides the answer.

Should it now be mandatory in ambulances?

Flu shots halve heart attacks

Influenza Vaccines Halve Heart Attacks MCIIf you have a heart condition, a flu shot might help.

The Influenza Vaccine is often prescribed for those over 65. Some governments offer it for free because it saves the health system money from treating cases of the flu.

A new study suggests that flu shots should be free for middle aged people over 50 with a heart condition - because it almost halves the risk of heart attacks and dramatically reduces the costs to the health system.

Smart phone case detects heart problems

An iPhone case that measures Atrial Fibrillation (AF) and heart rhythm problems to warn of stroke.Your choice of smart phone casing could save your life!

Until now, you needed to see a doctor for an ECG (ElectroCardioGram) to check your heart. You now only need your phone. The iPhone now has an iECG!

The iECG allows doctors to screen patients for atrial fibrillation, the most common heart rhythm problem, in minutes and treat them early, says Professor Ben Freedman.