A new study has revealed that heart attacks are triggered less by genetic factors and more by lifestyle factors, suggesting that heart attacks are not as connected to family history as may have been thought earlier.
The research team at the Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute in Salt Lake City found that while severe coronary artery disease can be inherited regardless of whether someone has a heart attack, the presence of heart attacks in people with less severe coronary disease was not clustered in families.
Researcher Benjamin D. Horne said that because coronary disease and heart attacks are so closely related, researchers in the past have assumed they're the same thing and thought that if someone had coronary disease, they would eventually have a heart attack.
Horne added that this finding may help people realize that, through their choices, they have greater control over whether they ultimately have a heart attack.
Horne continued that these findings help them find new knowledge that has wide-spread, world-wide relevance in helping people avoid health risks and improve their quality of life.