Dr Chris on the link between paracetamol and heart disease
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A new study says taking a cocoa supplement could reduce the risk of dying from heart or circulatory disease.
The study, conducted by Brigham and Women’s hospital found those who took the supplement were 27 percent less likely to die from a range of heart and circulatory conditions.
Doctor Howard Sesso, epidemiologist at the hospital said the results had revealed “promising signals that a cocoa flavanol supplement may reduce cardiovascular events and deaths”.
While the results of the study were promising, Doctor Sesso recommended: “Our message for consumers is to eat a healthy, balanced diet, rich in natural sources of flavanols.”
The NHS has a number of recommendations for those who want to decrease the likelihood of cardiovascular disease developing.
Stopping smoking, having a balanced diet, exercising regularly, maintaining a healthy weight, and cutting down on alcohol are recommended as ways to prevent cardiovascular disease.
So too is medication.
The NHS says: “If you have a particularly high risk of developing CVD, your GP may recommend taking medication to reduce your risk.”
Examples of these medications include statins to lower cholesterol levels and low dose aspirin to reduce the risk of blood clots.
Statins work by slowing down the production of LDL cholesterol in the liver.
Like all medications, statins come with side effects.
These side effects will normally be listed on a leaflet that comes with the medication.
However, should a side effect not be present on the leaflet, it is still possible to report the side effect.
In 1964, the government set up the Yellow Card Scheme.
Through this scheme, the public could report side effects or problems with medicines or medicinal products.
Having submitted a report the MHRA would review it and decide whether further action was necessary.
In recent years, with the occurrence of the pandemic, the Government has created a Covid specific Yellow Card Scheme.
Through this portal the public could report issues with Covid related products and medications.
Whether this continues as a standalone scheme or is absorbed into the original is yet to be seen.
For more information on cardiovascular disease contact the NHS or consult with your GP.
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