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Diet & Health : Heart & Blood Last Updated: Apr 20, 2011 - 9:38:09 AM

Fasting reduces heart risk
By Jimmy Downs
Nov 10, 2008 - 10:03:03 AM

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Monday Nov 10, 2008 ( -- Regularly fasting or skipping meals may reduce risk of heart disease, according to a study presented at a 2007 American Heart Association conference.


The study led by Benjamin Horne of the University of Utah in Salt Lake City and colleagues found only 61 percent of Mormons had heart disease compared with 66 percent of non-Mormons.


Mormons practice their fasting once a month.   Although these believers also follow practices like avoiding tea, coffee and alcohol; taking a weekly day of rest; going to church, and donating time or money to charity, it may be fasting that reduces the risk of heart disease.


The researchers found people who skipped meals once a month were 40 percent less likely to have clogged arteries than those who adhered closely to 3-meal-a-day dietary regimen.


For the study, the researchers surveyed 515 people and found only fasting made a significant difference in heart risks: 59 percent of regular meal skippers were diagnosed with heart disease compared to 67 percent of the others.

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