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A new study suggests that women who live within 50 meters of major roads could be at an increased risk of sudden cardiac death (SDC).
SDC, responsible for half of all heart disease deaths, is the leading cause of natural deaths in the Unites States. The study, published online in Circulation, said that the risk of SDC is 38 percent higher among women who lived within 55 yards of a major road than those who live more than 540 yards away.
The correlation is attributed to an increased exposure to air pollution. For SDC, researchers say that exposure to air pollution is a risk factor as important as smoking and obesity.
“Regardless of where you live, adopting heart-healthy habits, such as maintaining a healthy weight, being physically active, eating nutritious foods, quitting smoking and managing stress, can help decrease your risk of heart and blood vessel disease,” said Jamie Hart, lead researcher and an instructor in medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston.