Want a healthy heart? Get a dog, study suggests
Fido is good for your heart.
Dog owners are more active, eat better and have healthier blood sugar levels, the study found — all of which translates into better cardiovascular health, a new study by the Mayo Clinic suggests.
The health benefits were evident even though dog owners were slightly more likely to be smokers.
The study, which started in 2013, looked at a population of 1,769 adults in the city of Brno in the Czech Republic.
Just over 24 percent of those studied were dog owners; overall, 42 percent reported owning any kind of pet.
“Compared with the owners of other pets, dog owners were more likely to report physical activity and diet at ideal level,” the study’s authors wrote.
“In fact, dog owners exhibited better CVH even than non-dog owners, including owners of other pets.”
The subjects, who were between the ages of 25 and 64 years at the start of the study, will be followed until 2030.
“Pet owners, and specifically dog owners, were more likely to report physical activity, diet, and blood glucose at ideal level and smoking at poor level,” the study authors wrote, “which resulted in higher CVH (cardio-vascular health) score than non-pet owners.”
The study was published in the journal “Mayo Clinic Proceedings; Innovations, Quality & Outcomes.”
An estimated 17 million people across the world die of cardiovascular disease each year.
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