In one study, people who took daily aspirin had a 0.38 percent lower absolute risk of heart attacks, strokes or deaths from cardiovascular events than people not taking this drug. "For many patients without cardiovascular disease at moderate risk, the advantages do not exceed the risks". That risk rises as one ages or develops kidney disease, heart disease, diabetes and high blood pressure.
Instead, the guidelines recommended several behavioral changes to ensure a healthy heart.
Along with those dietary changes, people should exercise at least exercise moderately for at least 150 minutes a week. Healthy eating also means limiting the intake of other things like salt, saturated fats, fried foods, processed meats, and sweetened beverages. Currently, only half of American adults are getting enough exercise and prolonged periods of sitting can counteract the benefits of exercise.
The committee reminded individuals that a healthy way of life is the most crucial method to avoid the onset of atherosclerotic heart disease, cardiac arrest, and atrial fibrillation.
"People who are between 40 years to 70 who are at really high risk for stroke or heart attack, they are still a candidate, but we have to individualize the decision".
Using aspirin in younger age groups "is now a class 2b recommendation", Campbell said, "meaning that it is not necessarily the best course of action; there is much debate among experts, and the data is not definitive".
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And fish oil supplements, also tested in the study of people with diabetes, failed to help. Recent research suggests that the chance of bleeding, given the blood-thinning effect of aspirin, may be too high and the evidence of benefit-the number of heart attacks or strokes that are actually prevented-is not sufficient enough to make a daily aspirin worth taking for most adults in this setting.
However, personally, Campbell says, he "would advocate a healthy lifestyle, smoking cessation and risk-factor modification before even considering aspirin therapy in a patient without known cardiovascular disease".
" Clinicians need to be very selective in recommending aspirin for people without known heart disease", said Dr. Roger Blumenthal, co-chair of the 2019 ACC/AHA Guideline on the Main Avoidance of Heart Disease, in a declaration.
Only select people with a high risk of cardiovascular disease and low risk of bleeding might continue using the painkiller as a preventative, as told by their doctor, Blumenthal said.
US doctors have long advised adults who haven't had a heart attack or stroke but are at high risk for these events to take a daily aspirin pill, an approach known as primary prevention.