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The South Beach Heart Program is specifically designed to prevent heart disease and stroke, two of the most common causes of death and disability in the Western world.
Agatson, a cardiologist, says that the medical profession is oriented towards invasive treatment of existing heart disease rather than preventing the disease in the first place. He believes that certain noninvasive techniques for evaluating heart disease risk are underused by the medical profession, and that addressing risks identified by those diagnostic techniques using South Beach diet principles, regular aerobic and core-strengthening exercise, and use of medications as necessary will reduce the need for invasive procedures such as angioplasty and bypass surgery. Agatson terms this approach “aggressive prevention” and claims he has seen vast reductions in the number of heart attacks and referrals for heart surgery in his own medical practice as a result of this approach.
So far, there has been no significant critical evaluation of the South Beach Heart Program. Critics of other diet and lifestyle programs say that they are often difficult for people to adhere to. Critics of the newer noninvasive tests such as those recommended by this program, say they are expensive and have not been adequately tested for reliability.
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The information presented in Aisle7 is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. Self-treatment is not recommended for life-threatening conditions that require medical treatment under a doctor's care. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over the counter medication is also available. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires June 2014.