Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

3/13/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Discovery suggests that heart disease may not be result of modern lifestyle

Ancient mummies from around the world have yielded surprises to modern researchers. Many of the mummies showed signs of heart disease, hardening of the arteries or atherosclerosis. The findings suggest that heart disease, brought upon by lifestyle choices and diet may not be an entirely modern health issue.

Researchers used CT scans to look at mummies from Egypt, Peru, southwest America, and the Aleutian Islands in Alaska. They found that 47 or 34 percent showed signs of definite or probably atherosclerosis.

Researchers used CT scans to look at mummies from Egypt, Peru, southwest America, and the Aleutian Islands in Alaska. They found that 47 or 34 percent showed signs of definite or probably atherosclerosis.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

3/13/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Health

Keywords: Mummies, heart disease, hardening of arteries, research, atherosclerosis


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A study in The Lancet of 137 mummies up to 4,000 years old found a third had signs of atherosclerosis. The findings may suggest a more basic human pre-disposition.

Atherosclerosis has been discovered in a significant number of Egyptian mummies. It was speculated that they would have come from a higher social class, where their diets were high in saturated fat.

However, researchers used CT scans to look at mummies from Egypt, Peru, southwest America, and the Aleutian Islands in Alaska. They found that 47 or 34 percent showed signs of definite or probably atherosclerosis.

Researchers were able to attribute a definite case of atherosclerosis by looking for the tell-tale signs of vascular calcification. Calcified deposits were still present in sites where arteries would have once been. Older people seemed to be more likely to show signs of the disease, as they do in present times.

What made these recent discoveries so striking was that it allowed researchers a glimpse at the disease in people living in disparate global regions, with different lifestyles and at different times.

"The fact that we found similar levels of atherosclerosis in all of the different cultures we studied, all of whom had very different lifestyles and diets, suggests that atherosclerosis may have been far more common in the ancient world than previously thought," Study leader Professor Randall Thompson, of Saint Luke's Mid America Heart Institute in Kansas City, said.

"Furthermore, the mummies we studied from outside Egypt were produced naturally as a result of local climate conditions, meaning that it's reasonable to assume that these mummies represent a reasonable cross-section of the population, rather than the specially selected elite group of people who were selected for mummification in ancient Egypt."

In the past, it was widely thought that if modern humans could emulate pre-industrial or even pre-agricultural lifestyles, that atherosclerosis would be avoided.

"Our findings seem to cast doubt on that assumption, and at the very least, we think they suggest that our understanding of the causes of atherosclerosis is incomplete, and that it might be somehow inherent to the process of human ageing."

Maureen Talbot, senior cardiac nurse at the British Heart Foundation, added that "we simply don't know enough about the diet and lifestyle of the people studied to say whether behavior or genetics lies at the root of the heart problems observed.

"We can't change the past, but lifestyle choices can help to affect our future. By eating well, quitting smoking and keeping active, you can help to protect your heart."

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for December 2014
Christmas, hope for humanity:
That the birth of the Redeemer may bring peace and hope to all people of good will.
Parents: That parents may be true evangelizers, passing on to their children the precious gift of faith.



Comments


More Health

Forget the Fountain of Youth: New research discovers ibuprofen's potential to add 12 years to the human life Watch

Image of New research supports ibuprofen's potential to expand the human life up to 12 years.

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

When people get older, people get sick. What if we could figure out why this cycle occurs, and find ways to intervene with the process? Perhaps, we can then find ways to extend the human health span. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The Buck Institute for Research ... continue reading


Global life expectancy up six years from 24 years ago Watch

Image of Death rates from some major chronic conditions were on the rise, including liver cancer caused by hepatitis C, which is up 125 percent since 1990.

By Troy Dredge, Catholic Online

People, on average are living a few years longer than they did in 1990. According to a new study, the average global citizen lives to be 71.5 in 2013, which is up from 65.3 in 1990. Global life expectancy rose by 5.8 years in men and 6.6 years in women between ... continue reading


New plague panic? New strains of malaria appear immune to current treatment Watch

Image of Mass drug treatments have been tried before with varying success.

By Astrid Zweynert, Thomson Reuters Foundation

Ka Lar Nar caught malaria for the sixth time when he was working away from home on his small farm in the jungle of southeastern Myanmar but this time it was a lot harder to get rid of it. MIN SAW, Myanmar (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - After testing positive for ... continue reading


Growing the Church in China

Image of

By John Smagula

The world's best teas are grown in China, but many of these teas are unknown in the United States. Remote tea farms in exotic locations produce teas that rarely reach the American teacup. Of the 1.75 million tons of tea that China produces each year, less than 2% is ... continue reading


Superbugs strike again: 10 million expected to die annually by 2050 Watch

Image of Drug resistant infections, like E. coli, are expected to resist more antibiotics, making infection prevention impossible.

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Drug resistant infections currently cause 700,000 deaths worldwide each year. If something is not done to adamantly fight against antimicrobial resistance, a new study professes that number will grow. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Antimicrobial resistance will ... continue reading


If they can't heave health care than neither should you! The hidden agenda behind Obamacare! Watch

Image of President Obama's Affordable Care Act has failed utterly and completely. It has done nothing but harm the United States and its citizens through direct action and ignorance.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

When President Obama undertook his extensive campaign to pass the Affordable Care Act (ACA) one of his chief promises was that individuals were guaranteed the right to keep their current physicians, another was that the ACA would allow those on the new health ... continue reading


Explorer Christopher Columbus did not bring 'STD's' back to Europe Watch

Image of Christopher Columbus has a lot to answer for -- but according to some scientists, bringing syphilis from the new world to the old was not one of them.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Spanish explorer Christopher Columbus had a lot to answer for - but bringing back syphilis from the new world to Europe was not one of them. A skeleton excavated from a grave in Croatia has disproven this theory, suggesting that the sexually transmitted disease ... continue reading


GOOD NEWS: HIV's ability to cause AIDS weakening worldwide, study finds Watch

Image of Some 35 million people currently have HIV and AIDS has killed around 40 million people since it began spreading 30 years ago.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Just in time for World AIDS Day, December 1st. comes some most encouraging news: The world has finally reached "the beginning of the end" of the AIDS pandemic, a leading campaign group claimed today. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to a study of ... continue reading


Fountain of Youth discovered at last? Revolutionary wrinkle cream heralded Watch

Image of Created by Professor Chris Toumazou, Regius Professor at Imperial College London, among his many other accomplishments invented the cochlear ear implant, the artificial pancreas for Type 1 diabetics and the wireless heart monitor.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Emollients, moisturizers and facial scrubs are typically used by consumers to keep unsightly wrinkles off the face. Many forego aging gracefully and strive to maintain a youthful face well past middle age. Now, a brand new "wrinkle cream" which uses the client's ... continue reading


How the Obama administration just sued itself over Obamacare enforcement Watch

Image of Obamacare may be intended to have a disruptive impact on medical care, leaving the government as the only agency which can resolve the problems it has itself created.

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Obama may face added backlash against his signature healthcare plan as leading CEOs are challenging Obama's "workplace wellness" programs. Although Obamacare has largely been popular with big businesses in the US, its interference with business practices are proving ... continue reading


All Health News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Isaiah 7:10-14
10 Yahweh spoke to Ahaz again and said:11 ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 24:1-2, 3-4, 5-6
1 [Psalm Of David] To Yahweh belong the earth and all ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 1:26-38
26 In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for December 20th, 2014 Image

St. Dominic of Silos
December 20: Benedictine abbot and defender of the faith. Born in Canas, ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter