The study, which was presented at the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Congress 2019, found evidence that physical inactivity, smoking, high blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol play a greater role than genetics for most patients under 50 with coronary artery disease (CAD).

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 “Our study provides strong evidence that people with a family history of premature heart disease should adopt healthy lifestyles, since their poor behaviors may be a greater contributor to heart disease than their genetics,” Sousa explained. “That means quit smoking, exercise regularly, eat a healthy diet, and get blood pressure and cholesterol levels checked.”

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